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What Play Based Learning is All About

Nicole Thompson is a childhood educator- has been in the field for 28 years. Started out doing theme based program and now works in play based program with preschoolers.

They let children lead the way in how they want to learn. They also have structure, like workbooks and all aspects of learning with the kids as they follow their interests.

Theme based: the teacher makes up the activities for the day based on a theme the teacher chooses.

Play based: they notice what the children are interested in, and follow their lead.

They incorporate things that they are doing at home and are interested in, until they move onto something else.

How to Structure Play Based Learning

Ask kids questions and observing, and writing down things that they do.

She then follows up on that, and if the interest is small, they move on.

If the kids are interested in, they continue it for longer.

Kids incorporate things that teachers would never think of.

As teachers research, they find out that there are things to learn in each subject.

Lessons in Teaching

Patience! Kids teach you to persevere and try something new if things don’t work.

You always have to be adaptable and learn new things.

It’s important to incorporate many different learning styles so that all kids can learn.

Don’t take things personally- continue on and try something new.

Be there for the kids and for the parents.

Be flexible.

Have fun!

Tips for Parents

1. Don’t overschedule your child.

They really just need time with you.

It causes you and your child a lot of stress if you are going from activity to activity.

Catch every moment with them that you can.

2. Label everything!

That way you can get everything back!

How Parents can Enhance their Child’s education

  • Read together

  • Help your child read to you

  • Play games together

  • Take them on outings- point out things you see

  • Offer workbooks (or make your own worksheets)

  • Use magnets to make patterns

  • Make up simple games- kids can use these to play and learn

Enjoy your child.

Don’t worry about little things- don’t compare.

Each child will develop on their own.

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