Loose Parts Play
Children are undoubtedly fascinated by new toys – for a while. This is because children quickly get the idea of what the toy does and then they push it aside.
The problem is that most manufactured toys have limited pre-determined purposes for play. These toys can be accompanied by a set of rules of how to play and how not to play with them. What the toy does is written or shown on the box and it even tells you what age a child should be to play with it. This toy may be gender stereotyped so you may get a strong message that you need to be either a boy or a girl to own such a thing.
The ‘Loose Parts’ theory of play is about remembering that the best play comes from things that allow children to play in many different ways and on many different levels. Environments that include ‘loose parts’ are infinitely more stimulating and engaging than static ones. The play environment needs to promote and support imaginative play though the provision of ‘loose parts’ in a way that doesn’t direct play and play opportunities, but allows children to develop their own ideas and explore their world.
The Meantóir 'Loose Parts Play' programme is very practical with lots of visual ideas to help educators provide open ended resources to enrich activities for babies, toddlers, preschool and afterschool children. Hopefully it will inspire you to make loose parts play a significant component of your emergent curriculum.
IMPORTANT* Before you start - please read 'NOTES FOR THE COURSE'. This contains important information to help you navigate the site if you are undertaking a programme for the first time.
The learning outcomes for this course are as follows:
Presentation with video/audio
Easy to follow components
Downloadable reference documents
Test multiple choice questions
Certificate of Completion