When play is curtailed…

Some more comments on imaginary play from Vivian Gussin Paley:

“Children are placed in a quandary: When play is curtailed, how are they to confront their fantasy villains? The potential novelists in our midst are endlessly hampered in the name of readiness for first grade and, increasingly, for kindergarten. …Today we judge or prejudge every shade of difference between children. … Nonetheless, the children continue to place their questions in story form for one another’s pleasure and information….”[1]

“Children are intoxicated by the seemingly endless supply of plots available just for the thinking.  Making up stories is the skill most admired by other children, who do not doubt the value of characters who jump higher than the moon during school time.”[2]

“The mind that has been freely associating with playful imagery is primed to tackle new ideas.  Fantasy play, rather than being a distraction, helps children achieve the goal of having an open mind, whether in the service of further storytelling of in formal lessons.”[3]

“Our fantasy characters became our confidants.  We would talk and listen to them and tell their stories at will.  They did not mask reality; they helped us interpret and explain our feelings about reality.”[4]

A question worth reflecting on in practice: do children lead in this way?


[1] P25 Vivian Gussin Paley (2004) A Child’s work; the importance of fantasy play.  The University of Chicago Press: Chicago and London

[2] P26 Vivian Gussin Paley (2004) A Child’s work; the importance of fantasy play.  The University of Chicago Press: Chicago and London

[3] P26 Vivian Gussin Paley (2004) A Child’s work; the importance of fantasy play.  The University of Chicago Press: Chicago and London

[4] P29 Vivian Gussin Paley (2004) A Child’s work; the importance of fantasy play.  The University of Chicago Press: Chicago and London

Advertisements

About backyardbooks

This blog is a kind of electronic storage locker for ideas and quotes that inform my research... literary research into fiction for young adults (with a special focus on New Zealand fiction). Kiwis are producing amazing literature for younger readers, but it isn't getting the academic appreciation it deserves. I hope readers of this blog can make use of the material I gather and share by way of promoting our fiction. Cheers!
This entry was posted in early years education, Understanding Education and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s