Citing three examples from Chapter 3, discuss the trend of decreasing play activity from school schedules in exchange for more academics. How might it affect children’s development for better or worse?
Children are forever learning but are in need of their learning to be structured to their ever maturing brains. Part of that is for children to be able to participate in exploratory play. Siegler & Ramani (Cited in Pearson, 2008) created a game to prove the need to develop to their full learning potential. Another reason lack of play could be detrimental to children in their early learning stage is one mentioned by McAlister & Peterson (2006) about social pretend play and the benefits it has to help children make links between people and things and realize items can be representative of real things. Another important tool of learning was brought about by Vygotsky. Vygotsky’s (1978) principals “Tools of the Mind” state play is essential for laying the ground work for future skills.
Siegler, R. S. & Ramani, G. B. (2008). Playing board games promotes low income children’s development. Developmental Science, 11, 655-661.
McAlister, A., & Peterson, C. C. (2006). Mental playmates: Siblings, executive functioning and theory of mine. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 24, 733-751.
Vygotsky, L. S. (1978). Mind and society. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.