1st Edition

Calling All Superheroes: Supporting and Developing Superhero Play in the Early Years

By Tamsin Grimmer Copyright 2020
    211 Pages 70 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    211 Pages 70 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Calling All Superheroes highlights the enormous potential of superhero play in supporting learning and development in early childhood. Using examples from practice, it provides guidance on how to effectively manage and implement superhero play and set appropriate boundaries in early years settings and schools.

    Illustrated with engaging photographs and case studies, the book gives ideas about how superhero play can be used to promote positive values and teach children essential life skills. Offering practical strategies and questions for reflection designed to facilitate further development, chapters address important topics and challenges such as:

    • Child development, the characteristics of effective learning and the benefits of superhero play, including making sense of right and wrong and increasing moral awareness
    • How to broach difficult themes like death, killing, weapons, aggressive play and gender-related issues
    • Supporting children to recognise everyday heroes and how to find heroic abilities within themselves
    • The role of the adults in managing superhero play, engaging parents and creating effective learning environments

    Written by a leading expert with 20 years’ experience in the early years sector, this book is an essential resource for early years teachers, practitioners and anyone with a key interest in young children’s education and learning.


    About the Author


    1. “I can fly like Superman!”  
    The importance of fantasy play in child development

    2. “I’m going to make a gun!”
    Exploring aggression and violent play

    3. “I’m gonna kill you.. you’re dead!”
    Dealing with notions of killing and death

    4. “Boys will be boys!” 
    Is superhero play a question of gender?
    5. “Superheroes? British Values?”
    British Values and early years provision
    Dr Kay Mathieson

    6. “My dad is my hero!”
    Exploring the real heroes in our lives

    7. “Where’s my cape?” 
    Creating a super learning environment!

    8. “Freddy’s gonna ‘get’ you!”
    Effectively managing superhero play

    9. “He practically lives in his Spiderman costume at home…”
    Engaging with parents about superhero play

    10. “To infinity and beyond!”
    Encourage your children to find their super powers!

    Concluding remarks


    Tamsin Grimmer is an experienced consultant and trainer, a director of Linden Learning and a lecturer in early years at Bath Spa University. She is based in Wiltshire, UK.