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May 23 , 2010

Child-Initiated Play and Learning

Planning for possibilities in the early years


Planning is central to the role of any early years practitioner and involves careful consideration of resources and the learning environment, learning outcomes, observation and assessment and the unique abilities of individual children. This is a big ask and in a busy setting it can be a challenge to adopt a flexible, creative approach to planning that embraces the unexpected rather than relying on templates or existing schemes of work.

This book takes a fresh look at planning to consider the possibilities that should be encouraged when playing alongside young children. It shows how a creative approach that allows for spontaneous adventures in play through child-led projects leads to rich learning experiences that build on children’s own interests. Drawing on practice from Reggio Emilia, New Zealand , Scandinavia and settings in the UK, the book covers all aspects of planning including:

  • using observations of children to enable them to lead projects;
  • organisation of indoor and outdoor learning environments;
  • inclusive practice;
  • learning through risk taking and adventure play;
  • working with parents and carers;
  • encouraging the team to consider different ways of working.

Including encounters from authentic settings and provocative questions for reflective practice, this timely new text aims to give students and practitioners the confidence to adopt a flexible approach to planning that will better meet the needs of the children in their care.

The authors are experienced lecturers, practitioners, mentors and assessors. Working with students, visiting placements, training teachers and early years professionals, they provide a sense of real purpose in their writing and enjoyment in the themes made explicit throughout this book.

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