Posts Tagged ‘guided play’

Guiding Guided Play

Posted 26 Sep 2014 — by Jennifer
Category Uncategorized

Well, it never made it into the editorials in the NY Times, but here is my response to Gina Bellafante’s article, “Guiding Guided Play.”

The merits of progressive education may be beneficial to less privileged children. (Bellafante, Guiding Guided Play,” New York Times, September 7, 2014). However, her description of environments such as the dramatic play area, misses the essence of complex play. It is not to “sound out the spelling of a word like ‘pizza.’” Rather, imitation, symbolic representation, negotiation, conversation, cooperation, and imagination are important benefits and should be valued equally with spelling mastery. Attributing a hierarchy to disciplines diminishes the importance of experiences that make a well-rounded, life-long learner. Society must recognize the inherent worth of all domains of learning to eliminate achievement gaps. What affluent children gain by “conversations about the mechanics of Congress …or the history of bagels…” is not information, but, as Ms. Farina knows, the ability to converse and sustain relationships, “some of the most important training of all.”