Transcript of Play based pedagogy – working with families, Part 2

Play based pedagogy – working with families, part two video (26:22)

Narrator – Hello and welcome to the session play based pedagogy Part two working with families. I would like to start by acknowledging the traditional custodians of the land on which this recording takes place and the lands at all participants are learning on. I recognise their continuing connection to land, water and community. I pay respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past, present and emerging.

Throughout the session we will be applying the following standard descriptors from the Australian professional standards for teachers, I will just give you a moment to read through those.

And these are decision outcomes. So the main focus of today's session is to support teachers to work in partnership with families to provide meaningful play experiences in the home. We'll be exploring how play experiences and everyday interactions in the home support children's learning, analysing the potential of affective partnerships with families. And considering the ways to make this learning visible with families and work in partnership to develop strategies that progress children's learning.

I would like to draw your attention to the department support website learning from home. This website unpacks the way schools will maintain teaching and learning in the event of prolonged school closure or student absence, and provides links to support teachers in the use of technology, advice to families, and access to teaching and learning materials for teachers and parents. I encourage you to go and have a look if you haven't already. See what's there that will support you, and hopefully you'll find some really useful supports for your teaching remotely.

So you would already have engaged in the session before this play based pedagogies which was designed to support teachers in their understanding and knowledge of play based learning. This session will support you in working with parents and families to incorporate play into students learning experiences whilst they are being educated at home.

In session one, you introduced to the theoretical basis for play, and you're able to see that as very appropriate pedagogy for young children. And by this I mean children in the birth to eight age group, which includes early stage one and stage one students in schools. So as you read through this slide, this summary of the key points from part one. Consider what aspects of that session resonated with you. Think about how you already use play based pedagogies in your classroom, and consider the power of play as we move into teaching remotely.

As we've already established, the theory and research base for plays strong. And this holistic approach to learning leads to educational outcomes. You may recognise some of the theorists on this slide. Play based learning is age appropriate. Learning for children birth to eight years, it creates a natural desire for children to learn. It's something children want to do and want to engage in voluntarily. It provides for multifaceted multidisciplinary an integrated learning. All of the key learning areas can be met through play. Play is a means to scaffolding learning it takes children from something that is known to something that isn't known yet and it supports them in that process. Also, children develop skills through playing with materials. And education and learning a social and interactive processes, and this occurs through play.

This video clip of Holly playing a maths game is a great example of how the theory based leads to syllabus outcomes. So watch this video, find the number maths game to see an example of the learning emerging through play.

You could say from the video how Holly was highly engaged and the experience created a natural desire with with in her to play and connect. With her mum, she demonstrated emerging skills from the way her fingers and hands controlled the cards to her ability to communicate the rules of the game. If we focus on just one of the theorists covered, we can see how Maths, English, PDHPE and even history can be applied to one playful moment that can happen at home. So in summing up the remainder of the session will focus on how we as teachers can support families in facilitating their children's learning at home. Through play will be looking at ways to communicate the value of plate of families and develop ways to see learning through the lens of family life.

So let's talk about how we can support families with the learning. That's going to be happening at home. Families are very busy and they have many competing challenges. So in this climate, families will be juggling challenges. Then we may not even be aware of. One of the advantages of play based pedagogies that it can fit into the usual activities and routines that families engaging throughout the day. The more engaging and natural the learning, the more manageable it will be for families.

So let's think back to our own childhoods. Think about the sort of things you enjoy doing as a child. I know I for one enjoyed digging holes in the garden and making mud pies. These simple everyday play experiences promote 21st century skills. They engage children in critical thinking and they lead to higher order skills and thinking such as creativity. So you can see here this slide shows some of the thinking skills that a child might be demonstrating by making mud pies. These demonstrate a range of thinking skills such as remembering, knowing what tools to use, understanding, the knowledge of how to hold a spade and control the motion to get enough dirt to fill a bucket with water and add ingredients. It also involves applying, adding an appropriate amount of water and mixing it to the right consistency. The child may recall making cakes and apply this knowledge to their play.

And this slide shows higher order thinking. Children are often focused their minds on the higher order thinking whilst in play, especially if an adult or more advanced peers provides prompts and scaffolds. So when prompted and supported, or given the opportunity, there may be some analysis that the child will undergo. So let's say the mixture was too sloppy. The child may have deduced this as a problem to be solved. And evaluating the child may try always to get more dirt on the spade, listen to do with other implements, and workout how much to add. Creating is a very high order thinking skill. The child might create different ways to use a mixture. Maybe making smoothies with the wet mixture pause with the mixture that's just right, or sculptures with the dry mixture. This may lead to further analysing, evaluating, and creating through experimentation with various mixtures. Who knows what might happen? Children will be led to ask what happens when and trial. Various ways of using the materials.

This way of thinking about play can be used to support families to help families understand the value of playing those everyday experiences. You could share your own memories of playing, asked the family to share theirs. You could have conversations about how their own child's favourite game or play activity is useful in developing those higher levels of thinking. You may provide some simple scaffolds that will promote those higher levels of thinking, such as the list of prompts or open ended questions, or the provision of the sorts of materials that will lead to this. You can also use the families reflection to assist the child's learning and share this with them. Celebrate the child's learning that has been supported through the play. And acknowledge the family is the child's first and most influential teacher. The more we acknowledge families in this way, the more willing they are going to be to share the learning with us.

In thinking about our own experiences, we are able to resonate with the topic. Such memories often have a high level of emotion that may be aroused and families can benefit from guidance in recognising how their own play benefited them. I'd like you now to think of the play experience that you do recall from your own childhood or in having watch children in play in your home. Think of play that typically occurs in a house or backyard. The purpose of this task is to strengthen your ability to reassure parents that playing is a powerful avenue for learning.

In thinking about ways to work with parents, it's important to consider the relationship of partnership. Effective partnerships lead to many benefits for children's learning and do lead to better outcomes. The following slides are taken from the schools excellence framework and this help us to see what effective partnerships with families look like.

Just take a moment to read through this slide. In reading through this slide, think about all the ways that you use information that you've garnered about individual students. From the earliest school day suggests that families are a source for this information. Families are our children's first and most influential teachers. This shared knowledge of individuals is vital for children's engagement in learning and achievement of outcomes.

Take some time to read this slide. Not the idea of active participants. Think of your concept of partnership. Is it a reciprocal and respectful relationship based on foundations of understanding each others perspectives and attitudes? Is it built on strings? This motivates students to deliver their best and continually improve when they can see that parents and teachers are on the same page and on their behalf.

Just take a moment to read the final slide in this series. So the collective responsibility for student learning is shared by families. It's informed by the holistic information that parents have to offer. And it's a consultative relationship.

So in summary, parents, carers families are source for information's children's first and most influential teachers. The shared knowledge of individuals is vital for engagement in learning and achieving outcomes. Partnership is a reciprocal and respectful relationship. Partnership is based on the foundation of understanding each others perspectives, and it's built on strengths. This is what motivates students to learn. And the collective responsibility for student learning is shared by parents and carers or families and is informed by the holistic information parents have to offer. So using this summary, can you consider why partnership with parents and caregivers is so important in education?

Using the summary from the previous slide dropped a message to send out to parents to the parents of your students. That encourages them to enter into partnership with you. Consider how you will communicate. This will be an email or letter, a handout.

Making the learning visible. So far we've established that learning through play is sound pedagogy for young children. That we can share this understanding with families and that effective partnerships with families promote children's learning and engagement. The final component of this session is to consider ways to work with families so that children's learning is visible and can be progressed.

Learning Is everybody's business. It is a collective responsibility and all parties have a stake in the success of the learning.

As mentioned earlier on the department's website, there are many resources that will support you in teaching remotely. I'd like to draw your attention to a weekly framework that has been made available. It's a sample of a one week program of activities. These types of activities provide a good guide to get you started. I've circled one activity that could be extended into a place scenario, so will be using this to examine how learning at home can be made visible to parents, children and teachers.

So your task here is to extend this learning experience so that children will be reaching higher levels of learning through play. The main aspect of the learning is for children to pretend they're hosting a big party. What food would you like? What food would your guests like? Draw or write a shopping list and upload to our class team. So as you can see, the initial intention is around literacy, learning and thinking about the sorts of things that might be needed for a party and to represent that understanding. But I'd like you to develop a play scenario that families couldn't create at home based on this activity. Plant some learning outcomes from at least three key learning areas. And provide a scaffold parents to provide the play including possible resource is questioning and prompts to support the outcomes.

So before we workout, how to make the learning visible? We need to imagine the scene. In creating your plan, can you imagine it? Is likely to be a space created for the party. Perhaps party hats, name cards, balloons. The parent and child rather siblings will be busy preparing the table, ensuring enough settings and that the name cards are in the right place. What sorts of decorations do we need? Who's invited? How many settings? They may be invitations to design and right up there may need to be some cooking or preparing of food. Materials will need to be provided to pretend with such as kitchen utensils, play food, food items, maybe even the characters who are going to join the party dolls or teddies from around the house.

A Y chart is a handy tool to consider the scene further. For example. What do you imagine this will look like? What might observers see what might be happening. Take a picture in your mind and describe it. I think it would have busy and active. They probably be lots of heads down as they plan and work to create the party. There might be a bit of a mess around. They might be dolls and teddys scattered which need to be seated at the party. What might it sound like? What might the listener here? What sort of sounds will there be? Make an audio recording in your mind and describe it? Imagine there'd be lots of chatter ideas being shared, perhaps arguments they might be party music playing. And what might feel like? What might the participants be feeling? What sort of emotions will there be? What might you feel as someone who's interacting or provoking the play or observing it? I think they'd be a lot of fun and kindness, perhaps a lot of excitement.

A Y chart can be used when you're planning with families. You can share the Y chart with families to encourage it's using planning and playing collaboratively. You could fill it out together when discussing how learning can be progressed. You could use it for backward mapping when you reflect with families or encourage families to be in the moment with their child and use it to see the child at play.

In supporting families to promote playing learning, you can see the roles that we all play in the child's progress. as the teacher you'll be aware of the outcomes at the students are achieving or working towards as they engage in the learning experiences through play. You might be making some suggestions verbally or at ideas to the program that a play based. And you'll also be assessing the learning and planning to progress it. The family on that, on the other hand, will be providing an environment that allows for play. They'll be encouraged to interact with their child and provide additional prompts or ideas, and the child themselves, well, they will play. They represent their learning in playful ways. And they will reflect on their learning through conversation with you or their parents.

It's a consultative relationship. The parent knows their child intimately. Parent knows how their child learns and enjoys learning. The teacher knows of learners in a collective sense. What supports learning for children in general, and what the curriculum requires. So with this in mind, you can collaborate on the learning and how it will be implemented. You can share in the lighting that's evident. Plan collaboratively for future learning and contribute to the teaching and learning cycle together.

So to complete the teaching and learning cycle, you will need to be able to assess the learning. How might you collect information from parents and caregivers about the learning experience that the student is engaged in? Consider ways to utilise what the parent knows and understands of their child. Making a conversational will promote that partnership, and while each member has a different role to play, the partnership is equal and each contribute. Each contribution is equally valued. So one way to assist the learning as it is for you to be able to view the students representations of their learning. Provide them with a learning journal or fine textures to represent their learning. Overtime pins or textures will be more easily seen on a screen if you're meeting online and receiving photos or screenshots, so that's something to take into consideration. You can also provide students with a small whiteboard and marker to borrow so that they can display their work. We can ask parents for audio samples of conversations while children are playing. Well, consider receiving video footage of children at play.

Bringing students together online where possible and discussing their progress is an important aspect of online learning or learning remotely, and that allows you to reflect with children about the experiences. So try to meet in small groups online where possible or with individuals regularly. Provide a virtual meeting time for the whole class and made a short discussion record the students reflections of their learning. And ask children questions based on the tasks that you set. For example, what sorts of things did you provide for the party? Was there anything else they needed who was invited? Those sorts of questions can lead children to discuss aspects of they play that led to their learning.

And as all of this is happening remotely away from school and in children's homes, you'll be needing to work closely with families around the assessment of what children are learning. So be available together, their observations, their descriptions and their reflections. I share your knowledge together. Make it conversational if you can, and remember that it's an equal partnership. Remembering that families know a lot about their child. While you know a lot about students and learning in general. And use those parents observations in your assessment and share this with families. Ask open ended question name about the learning. For instance, did Holly come up with any different ideas to play the maths game? Use active listening techniques so the parent knows that they've been heard. This will encourage them to keep sharing.

And let's not get forget that their everyday interactions, routines and events that happen in a home. And these sorts of things also lead to children's learning. So consider those everyday play scenarios. Asked families and children, what they enjoy playing with. Consider where the learning is in climbing a tree or running around with the dog, or building a cubby under the table and incorporate these ideas into your plans.

Household chores are a great avenue for children to learn about all sorts of key learning areas. So consider where's the maths in setting the table or making the bed or wiping a bench. Consider the scientific learning and taking out the garbage, walking the dog or watering the plants. And want to routines have to teach about HSIE. How can literacies and maths be incorporated into jobs that need doing such as shopping or cooking meals or vacuuming the floor?

Children have been practicing literacies and numeracies in their homes since birth that first time that a baby looks into their mothers eyes is an aspect of literacy as the next aspect of connecting and creating meaning between two people. So think about the children's engagement with popular culture, family celebrations or religious customs. How can this be incorporated into your programming? Consider everyday uses of literacy and numeracy that happened in the home. Such as writing up a shopping list or following a recipe, checking the letter box, or emails sitting up enough places for everyone at the table, or knowing when it's time to get up.

I want to thank you for spending this time with my talking about play and how it's such an important aspect of children's learning, particularly in the home, and that it's a way that we can support children in reaching curriculum outcomes. As a final task, I want you to think about the statement that's here. You may have heard it before, I know I've heard it many times in my teaching career. They just playing. How does this statement sit with you? What are the drawbacks? Reword the statement as if you were responding to a family member. And in applying the standard descriptor 1.2.2. Which reads structured teaching programs using research and collegial advice about how students loan. Consider how you might rephrase the statement or challenger.

Again, thank you for joining with me and engaging in the session tasks. I wish you well as you embark on a whole new way of teaching and hope that you will find creative and innovative ways to engage your young students and their families in learning through play at home.

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