Twelve Days of Popcorn (Day 6): Play

Bubble solution.  A snail tape dispenser.  A bouquet made of pasta flowers.  A solar powered toy car.  A squishable foam donkey.  Wizard’s Potion.  Pop up books.  Poetry by A.A. Milne.  A sign that says “Please do not throw confetti in the museum.”

My desk has a high fun quotient.  So does my job.  Going to toy stores is research and tossing around a fuzzy yellow rubber ball is teacher professional development.  This does not mean I don’t have stacks of books on state curriculum standards, reference materials, and more files than you can shake a stick at.  But fortunately, the people I work with understand that innovation, education, and play go together like ice cream, brownies, and chocolate sauce.

So it is with great pleasure that I get to point you towards a fabulous article by the House Masters of Pforzheimer House at Harvard, who are encouraging a broader understanding and use of play in all stages of education: “Want to get your kids into college? Let them play.”

 

The real “readiness” skills that make for an academically successful kindergartener or college student have as much to do with emotional intelligence as they do with academic preparation. Kindergartners need to know not just sight words and lower case letters, but how to search for meaning. The same is true of 18-year-olds.The real “readiness” skills that make for an academically successful kindergartener or college student have as much to do with emotional intelligence as they do with academic preparation. Kindergartners need to know not just sight words and lower case letters, but how to search for meaning. The same is true of 18-year-olds.

 

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