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ERIC Number: EJ839476
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0164-8527
Imaginative Play during Childhood: Required for Reaching Full Potential
Stephens, Karen
Exchange: The Early Childhood Leaders' Magazine Since 1978, n186 p53-56 Mar-Apr 2009
At a brisk pace, research findings focused on children's play are finally reaching the light of day in popular media. No longer left sitting in archives of academic journals, the benefits of play to lifelong success have been touted in radio, television, magazines, and newspapers. It gives early childhood professionals a powerful, credible advocacy tool to use with parents and community leaders as they strive to put children's play back into the heart of early childhood curriculum. In "A Mandate for Playful Learning in Preschool: Presenting the Evidence," (Hirsh-Pasek, et al.) a review of research confirms that children's self-initiated play nurtures overall development, not just cognitive development (such as learning to name colors, numbers, or shapes). In fact, research builds a very strong case that childhood play is a required experience in order to become a civilized, fully-realized human being. In this article, the author discusses some points which are upheld by research about important play outcomes. Abundant research has shown that play during early childhood is necessary if humans are to reach their full potential. For children, and in fact, for society's well-being, true play is a critical need, not a fanciful frill. And so it requires ethical early childhood programs to advocate for and insist upon including play as part of their daily curriculum and teaching strategy. This article concludes with some recommendations for achieving that goal. (Contains 10 resources and 6 online resources.)
Exchange Press, Inc. P.O. Box 3249, Redmond, WA 98073-3249. Tel: 800-221-2864; Fax: 425-867-5217; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A