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Cavanaugh, D. et al. (1-01) Kindergarten Scores, Storytelling, Executive Function, and Motivation Improved through Literacy-Rich Guided Play (Journal Article)

Colliver, Y. et al. (2019) The aim of the game: A pedagogical tool to support young children's learning through play (Journal Article)

Fisher, K. et al. (2013) Taking Shape: Supporting Preschoolers' Acquisition of Geometric Knowledge Through Guided Play (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Shape knowledge, a key aspect of school readiness, is part of early mathematical learning. Variations in how children are exposed to shapes may affect the pace of their learning and the nature of their shape knowledge. Building on evidence suggesting that child-centered, playful learning programs facilitate learning more than other methods, 4- to 5-year-old children (N = 70) were taught the properties of four geometric shapes using guided play, free play, or didactic instruction. Results revealed that children taught shapes in the guided play condition showed improved shape knowledge compared to the other groups, an effect that was still evident after 1 week. Findings suggest that scaffolding techniques that heighten engagement, direct exploration, and facilitate “sense-making,” such as guided play, undergird shape learning.

Date:
January 2013
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
Page/s:
n/a–n/a
Synonyms:
  • Academic outcomes
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Experimental
  • Free play
  • Learning
  • Playful learning
  • Pre-academic skills
  • Guided-play
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline:

Vong, K. (2012) Play – a multi-modal manifestation in kindergarten education in China (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Play, as an educational concept, has entered many kindergartens in China; yet it has not become a core idea, or been prioritised in the teaching and learning process. An ongoing trans-provincial study started in 2008, using observation, interviews and document analyses. Based on findings from nine kindergartens in three provinces, this article illustrates how the concept of play is perceived and manifested in kindergartens located in three cities across China. It is suggested that there is a certain relationship between the rank and the status of play in a kindergarten, which may offer a systematic way to better understand how the concept of play is represented in Chinese kindergartens. Evidence also shows that the play concept has influenced Chinese educational ideas and pedagogy at certain levels but without changing the fundamental Chinese ideas of a play and learning relationship. Explanations for the phenomena observed, such as ranking versus forms of manifestation will be suggested.

Author/s:
Date:
January 2012
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
32
Page/s:
35-48
Synonyms:
  • Academic outcomes
  • Developmental outcomes
  • Free play
  • Games with rules
  • Learning
  • Outdoor play
  • Playful learning
  • Pre-academic skills
  • Qualitative methodology
  • Semiotic play
  • Construction play
  • Guided-play
Relevant age group/s:

Weisberg, D. et al. (2013) Guided Play: Where Curricular Goals Meet a Playful Pedagogy (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Decades of research demonstrate that a strong curricular approach to preschool education is important for later developmental outcomes. Although these findings have often been used to support the implementation of educational programs based on direct instruction, we argue that guided play approaches can be equally effective at delivering content and are more developmentally appropriate in their focus on child-centered exploration. Guided play lies midway between direct instruction and free play, presenting a learning goal, and scaffolding the environment while allowing children to maintain a large degree of control over their learning. The evidence suggests that such approaches often outperform direct-instruction approaches in encouraging a variety of positive academic outcomes. We argue that guided play approaches are effective because they create learning situations that encourage children to become active and engaged partners in the learning process.

Date:
January 2013
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
7
Page/s:
104–112
Synonyms:
  • Academic outcomes
  • Free play
  • Literature review
  • Playful learning
  • Pre-academic skills
  • Guided-play
Relevant age group/s:

Zosh, J. et al. (2018) Accessing the Inaccessible: Redefining Play as a Spectrum (Journal Article)

Abstract:

Defining play has plagued researchers and philosophers for years. From describing play as an inaccessible concept due to its complexity, to providing checklists of features, the field has struggled with how to conceptualize and operationalize “play.” This theoretical piece reviews the literature about both play and learning and suggests that by viewing play as a spectrum – that ranges from free play (no guidance or support) to guided play and games (including purposeful adult support while maintaining playful elements), we better capture the true essence of play and explain its relationship to learning. Insights from the Science of Learning allow us to better understand why play supports learning across social and academic domains. By changing the lens through which we conceptualize play, we account for previous findings in a cohesive way while also proposing new avenues of exploration for the field to study the role of learning through play across age and context.

Date:
January 2018
Publisher or Journal:
Volume:
9
Page/s:
Synonyms:
  • Free play
  • Learning
  • Playful learning
  • Guided-play
  • Literature review
  • Play with other adult
Relevant age group/s:
Research discipline: