The challenge of play for early childhood educators

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperChapter (peer-reviewed)


Play has a long history as an integral element of early childhood curriculum and pedagogy. There is consensus that play is both a vehicle for learning and a forum in which children can demonstrate their learning and development (Broadhead, 2006; et aL, 2002; Pramling-Samuelsson and Johansson, 2006; Wood, 2008). Traditional beliefs reiterate the value and positive nature of play, particularly the opportunities within play for children to exercise freedom, independence, choice and autonomy (Bennett eta!., 1997). While the benefits of play for children have been widely promoted, much less attention has been directed towards pedagogics of play and the role of educators within these. Indeed, traditional conceptualisations of play promote the role of educators as observers or facilitators of play, reflecting a focus on play as a child-directed, rather than teacher -directed, activity (Bennett eta!., 1997).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRethinking play and pedagogy in early childhood education
Subtitle of host publicationConcepts, contexts and cultures
EditorsSue Rogers
Place of PublicationNew York
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9780203839478
ISBN (Print)9780415480765, 9780415480758
Publication statusPublished - 2011

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    Dockett, S. (2011). The challenge of play for early childhood educators. In S. Rogers (Ed.), Rethinking play and pedagogy in early childhood education: Concepts, contexts and cultures (1st ed., pp. 32-47). Routledge.