Hard to believe another school year is already underway! We are in full swing and I’m looking forward to another year of learning alongside the little souls that I’m blessed to have in my classroom everyday.
This will be a quick post; I just wanted to celebrate the fact that I found photo evidence of me achieving a goal I had with regards to free play time in my Pre-K classroom.
I have realized that when I plant myself in a stationary location during free play time, rather than flitting around from place to place, the students follow my lead and are also more grounded and engaged in longer play experiences.
It was my great pleasure to go through yesterday’s photos (taken by my lovely EA, who has become quite an adept documenter herself) and notice myself in the same position throughout our roughly hour-long play block. I plunked myself down in the block centre at the outset of play time and didn’t move once the entire time!
I was even more pleased to recognize that I had engaged with a variety of different students during this time. They literally do “come to you” if you plant yourself in one place. Students ended up bringing a basket of play food from the kitchen over to me to engage with together; this is the beauty of flexibility and ability of children to transport items within the classroom.
Granted, staying rooted in one spot doesn’t happen all the time (or even that often!) in Pre-K, as teachers need to be somewhat mobile to assist students in various areas of the room. But this is definitely a strategy that I would like to explore and employ more in the future. I continue to be so excited by the power of play and delight in the role that I can take in this beautiful learning.
Have you tried “planting” yourself during play time?
Have you noticed differences in how the children play when you do?
What other strategies do you employ as a teacher during free play time?
Until next time,