ERIC Number: ED023444
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1966
Reference Count: N/A
Spontaneous Play: An Avenue for Intellectual Development.
The Bulletin of the Institute of Child Study, v28 n2 1966
It is generally conceded that there is much for a child to learn while attending nursery school, but the teacher is often unsure as to what type of curriculum or program will best assure such learning. Specifically, although play has been part of all nursery school programs, it is questioned whether spontaneous play (that is, relatively unstructured play) has been used to its fullest advantage. Spontaneous play is not completely unstructured, as it occurs in the nursery classroom, for it must be responsive to the nature of the equipment or play-objects available. If it is understood how important spontaneous play is in the intellectual and cognitive development of the child, it will be easier to choose and provide toys and play-objects that have significant teaching potential; for example, blocks of various colors or sizes contribute to the fundamental discrimination and concept learning that occurs from the third to the fifth or sixth year of life. The range of toys provided must reflect not only the needs of many individual tastes and interests, but the many levels of development represented in a nursery school class. Both the psychoanalytic and the Piaget view of the value of play support the need of spontaneous play in early childhood education. The psychoanalytic view is that play allows the child to work out his emotions while forcing him to use his reasoning and creative abilities. Piaget sees play as a means of transition of the child from egocentrism to socialization and objectivization. (WD)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Columbia Univ., New York, NY. Teachers College.
Note: Paper read at Ontario Nursery Education Association, 1965.