Active Play

This week I was observed and subsequently interviewed by a Doctoral candidate.  He was specifically observing what he called, “active play”.  Active play, he explained is student-initiated physical activity, similar to what I term, “free-play”.

During active play, like free-play, children are free to play whatever they choose, with whoever they choose, however they choose.  I make a point to use this time to engage in real adult work, and leave the children to their “work”.

The benefits of active play include the development of fine and gross-motor coordination, the refinement of proprioceptive awareness, increased balance, strength, and endurance.  There are in addition, social and emotional benefits.

Some parents and teachers may be uncomfortable with the risks associated with unassisted physical activity.  As children play freely together, falls, slips, and crashes inevitably occur.  When accidents do occur, children are gradually released to respond independently.  You may find if the adult does not react, the child will simply get-up, dust herself off and resume active playing.  You will most certainly find compassionate playmates providing assistance to the best of their ability.

IMG_2975

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s