Children's Empowerment in Play : Participation, Voice and Ownership book cover
1st Edition

Children's Empowerment in Play
Participation, Voice and Ownership

ISBN 9781138322295
Published March 25, 2020 by Routledge
128 Pages

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Book Description

Children's Empowerment in Play is an accessible insight into the vital place of play in children’s development. The book focuses on three main themes of participation, voice and ownership, and explores ways to positively and naturally develop play in early years settings.

Drawing on primary research and presenting in-depth case studies of children in a range of play scenarios, Canning offers a framework for understanding play and its relationship with children’s empowerment, and highlights play patterns and the ways in which practitioners can identify these. Chapters also cover:

  • The research context for empowerment in play
  • The significance of play and empowerment in the lives of children
  • The power play can have, and indicators of empowering behaviour
  • Observing empowerment in play and the challenges of celebrating it

Written for all those working with young children and students on early childhood courses, this book will transform how you understand and engage with children’s experiences and learning.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 The Context of Researching Children’s Empowerment in Play

Chapter 2 The Significance of Play and Empowerment in Young Children’s Lives

Chapter 3 The Power of Play

Chapter 4 Indicators of Empowering Play Behaviour

Chapter 5 Exploring Children’s Participation, Voice and Ownership through Play

Chapter 6 Observing Empowerment in Play

Chapter 7 The Challenges of Celebrating Empowerment in Play



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Natalie Canning is a Senior Lecturer in Early Childhood Education at The Open University, UK. Her background is in playwork and social work, supporting children to explore personal, social and emotional issues through play.