In early childhood education, 'play-based learning' has long been the means of facilitating teaching and learning.
The strongest platform for early years education is when children are deeply engaged in rich exploratory play experiences that have been intentionally planned and developed by the educator. Intentional teaching provides open-ended experiences with provocations to extend skills, learning, and understandings (in contrast to simply extending a children's interests).
Early Childhood Play Matters concentrates on the most formative years of education (from birth to 6 years), where it all really begins with intentional, rich, and rigorous play-based opportunities for young children. The book builds upon the successful national and international work that the authors have brought in play-based curriculum in early and primary years through their previous publications: Play Matters and Engagement Matters.
The book provides the framework for educators to focus on the core role of building relationships with children and implementing a rich, intentional, play-based curriculum. It is full of practical ideas on setting up the play learning environment (indoors and outdoors), how to plan and document realistically in order to save time, and how to provide rich provocations for learning through play.
It contains a full-color section of photographs and templates for planning, assessing, and reporting activities. [Subject: Early Childhood Education]