Playful structure: a novel image of early years pedagogy for primary school classrooms

  title={Playful structure: a novel image of early years pedagogy for primary school classrooms},
  author={Glenda Walsh and Liz Sproule and Carol McGuinness and Karen J. Trew},
  journal={Early Years},
  pages={107 - 119}
Playful structure is a new pedagogic image representing a more balanced and integrated perspective on early years pedagogy, aiming to blend apparent dichotomies and contradictions and to sustain and evolve play-based practice beyond Year 1. Playful structure invites teachers and children to initiate and maintain a degree of playfulness in the child’s whole learning experience, even when the learning intentions demand a supportive structure. Thus, playfulness becomes characteristic of the… 

More than ‘just play’: picking out three dimensions of a balanced early years pedagogy

ABSTRACT This paper addresses the incompletely resolved tension between play-based and direct teaching approaches to early years pedagogy and practitioners’ resultant difficulties in understanding

Signalling playfulness: disguising work as play in the early years’ classroom

ABSTRACT Play has been widely investigated from a practice-based perspective; playfulness as an effective pedagogical tool has received less attention. Over an 8-year evaluation of a play-based

A scoping review of research on play‐based pedagogies in kindergarten education

Across a number of countries, play-based learning is the mandated pedagogy in early years’ curricula. However, a lack of consensus remains both in research and practice regarding the value and role

The importance of play in pedagogy in curriculum delivery and play provision for young children’s learning and development

In this study, play, play pedagogy, play provision and teachers’ roles in play in early childhood in accordance with England’s Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) will be discussed critically and

An exploratory case study: children’s comparative play access in English and Welsh classrooms

ABSTRACT The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989) stipulates children's right to play. General Comment No. 17 (2013) also emphasises the importance of play as a medium for

Free choice and free play in early childhood education: troubling the discourse

This article troubles the established discourse of free choice and free play in early childhood education, and develops post-structural approaches to theorising children's agency in the context of

Impact of a play-based curriculum in the first two years of primary school: literacy and numeracy outcomes over seven years

In 2000–2002 an innovative early years curriculum, the Enriched Curriculum (EC), was introduced into 120 volunteer schools across Northern Ireland, replacing a traditional curriculum similar to

Play as learning: implications for educators and parents from findings of a national evaluation of school readiness in Ireland

ABSTRACT Recent findings from a national examination of parents’ and early years educators’ perspectives on school readiness in Ireland imply that while play is valued as a context for learning,

The Relation between Teachers’ and Children’s Playfulness: A Pilot Study

This study is the first to show that teachers’ playfulness aspects are related to higher playfulness in children, thereby enhancing children’s playfulness.



Conceptualising progression in the pedagogy of Play and Sustained Shared Thinking in early childhood education: A Vygotskian perspective

This paper is concerned specifically with the pedagogies applied in supporting learning through children's play, and it is framed outside mainstream discourses on the nature of play. The development

Researching pedagogy in English pre‐schools

This article summarizes and reflects on the findings related to pedagogy of two closely associated Department for Education and Skills (DfES) funded research projects: the Effective Provision of

Implementing a play‐based and developmentally appropriate curriculum in Northern Ireland primary schools: what lessons have we learned?

In the United Kingdom tensions have existed for many years between the pedagogical traditions of pre‐school, which tend to adopt developmentally oriented practices, and the more formal or

Creativity, Communication and Collaboration: The Identification of Pedagogic Progression in Sustained Shared Thinking

The central purpose of this paper has been to provide a conceptual model that is capable of supporting the development of appropriate early childhood practices for the 21st Century. A strong

Assessing the quality of early years learning environments

This article describes a means of evaluating early years classrooms from the perspective of the child's experience. Nine key themes, such as motivation and independence, are identified as

Forward to Basics! Deep‐Level‐Learning and the Experiential Approach

Abstract The conceptual framework developed by the ‘Experiential Education’ project challenges the assumption that narrowly defined tests of academic achievement are the only means of measuring

Tools of the Mind: A Case Study of Implementing the Vygotskian Approach in American Early Childhood and Primary Classrooms. Innodata Monographs 7.

The development and piloting of the Tools of the Mind project is described, including the creation of the Early Learning Advisor, a computerized assessment system which provides direct advice to teachers on the developmental levels of their individual students, and gives them suggestions about how to apply the innovative teaching concepts in their daily work in the classroom.

The nature of playfulness in young adults

Shifting Images of Developmentally Appropriate Practice as Seen Through Different Lenses

Three position statements are reviewed with respect to their changing treatment of literacy: two versions of Developmentally Appropriate Practice (Bredekamp, 1987;Bredekamp & Copple, 1997) and

New directions in play: consensus or collision?

The aims of this article are to explore contemporary challenges to developing play in early childhood settings, and to identify areas of consensus and collision in policy and practice. Contemporary