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ERIC Number: ED405108
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996
Pages: 14
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Role of Play in Inclusive Early Childhood Settings.
Marchant, Catherine; Brown, Cheryl Render
Play is pivotal in making inclusion work and in providing learning opportunities for all children in inclusive early childhood settings. The nature of inclusive early childhood settings forces a reexamination of the underlying assumptions about play, its role in child development, and its place within the curriculum. A continuum of interventions and facilitation around play, from more to less directive, with a constructivist approach falling in the middle, may help teachers find the right balance between intervening to promote play and stepping back to allow play to develop naturally. Play has been less emphasized in early childhood special education programs than in regular education programs because children with disabilities often need more than the provision of play opportunities; play is used to reinforce skill development and to foster peer relations. Inclusive settings should use the best of both early childhood and early childhood special education practices and rely on the full range of play perspectives. Play should provide children with opportunities to engage in different types of play at different developmental states in a variety of social configurations. Developmentally appropriate practices with adaptive toys provide the foundation for play in inclusive settings. However, a more active adult role is necessary in an inclusive setting. The practitioner must balance intervention with letting play happen. Facilitating learning through play in inclusive settings requires new collaborations among various professionals and families. Unified professional preparation of early childhood and early childhood special education teachers will facilitate such teaming in inclusive settings. (KDFB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A