Providing a fresh approach to examining development in the early years, this book draws together well-established ideas and theories based on outdoor play experiences and connects them to spiritual development in children.
Elemental Play and Outdoor Learning considers socio-cultural perspectives, guided participation and mediated learning alongside playfulness as it looks at young children’s developing interest in the people around them, the environment they experience and the ideas and objects that involve them. Including rich encounters with young children and adults, chapters cover:
- elemental play as an approach to observe and support children’s holistic development;
- the role of people in developing effective exploratory and social skills;
- using the concept of elemental play to consider the spiritual system as an aspect of child development;
- imaginative play with raw, natural materials and how prepared environments can encourage children’s natural exploration;
- an exploration of well-established constructs of play and how elemental play can be integrated or re-conceptualised with the other theories.
Exploring current thinking about natural experiences, interest in forest school activity and fresh insight into dynamic ecological concepts, this book will be essential reading for practitioners and students on undergraduate and postgraduate early years and childhood studies courses.
Table of Contents
Foreword: Debbie Ryder 1. Elemental Play: more than sand and water 2. Playing with people 3. Exploring the outdoor world with others 4. Awe and wonder 5. Being in one’s element 6. The magic chocolate pit 7. Playing with things: children’s ideas and projects 8. Playing naturally: outdoors and inside 9. Natural play connections
Annie Woods is a former Senior Lecturer in Early Years at Nottingham Trent University, UK.