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Exploring Parent's Attitudes Towards Learning Through Play in the Foundation Stage - Essay Example

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Exploring Parents’ Attitudes Towards Learning Through Play In the Foundation Stage A Research Proposal Aim of the Study This study aims to investigate parents’ attitudes toward learning through play in the foundation stage. Objectives Specific objectives of this research are as follows: 1…
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Exploring Parent's Attitudes Towards Learning Through Play in the Foundation Stage

Download file to see previous pages... To consider how learning through play is measured at foundation stage. Rationale of the Study Play comes very naturally to children. From the time they are infants, play is already an activity that they engage in to learn about their world. As they grow, they discover more about the world around them through play. They use their senses to explore objects and learn about cause and effects when they manipulate such objects (Brewer, 2001). Macintyre (2003) asserts that young children learn better in play-like settings. Concepts are retained better when learned in an easy, relaxed and fun atmosphere that does not pressure children to perform in ways that stress them to achieve. Macintyre (2003) continues to endorse the value of play in all the developmental areas of children. Parents recognize the value of play but sometimes get confused about its function in children’s learning (Moyles, 1989). Developments in education point to the benefits of collaboration between the home environment and the school in the facilitation of children’s growth, learning and development. Wood (2004) argues that the Government endorses literacy and numeracy strategies that make use of play especially in the early years. The fact that parents are expected to take part in their children’s learning may press parents to seriously consider the advantages and disadvantages of play. Wiltshire (2002) claims that parents question what the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) has to offer to their children as it is heavily play based. If the parents’ view is that play is merely for entertainment and social purposes, then it is doubtful that parents will become fully involved as partners in their children’s education. Piaget argued that ‘play’ is often neglected by adults because it has no significant function (Piaget and Inhelder, 1969).  Brierley (1987) also points out that as adults, if a task is easy or unimportant, people refer to it as ‘child’s play’ which reinforces the idea that play is not challenging. Parents are seen as partners in their children’s education, so it is worthwhile to study how they view this role as parents of very young children who constantly engage in play as a form of enjoyment. Becoming aware that play may be used in the educational setting for learning as well as enjoyment may confuse parents as to the role play is given in the foundation stage. This study will investigate if parents believe that learning may be derived from play and if they actively endorse this belief at home. Literature Review Play and Children’s development The subject of play has attracted many scholars to study its process and how it benefits people. Holland (2003) studied heuristic play or the exploratory play of infants and toddlers and confirmed that play is used by children to investigate how things work, how people react, etc. Toys and other objects are explored freely by toddlers and they then observe what such things can or cannot do. In contrast to educational materials, which are designed by adults to expect certain responses from children, objects that encourage free play in the heuristic sense stimulate the child’s thinking, develop creativity and open the imagination to endless possibilities of transforming ordinary objects into various things with various functions (Holland, 2003). Much research has been done on play and its benefits to children’ ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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