The Importance of Play: Toddler to School-Age

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  • Lesson Identification and TEKS Addressed

    Cluster : Human Services

    Course : Child Development

  • TEKS Student Expectations

    • (4) The student investigates strategies for optimizing the development of toddlers of diverse backgrounds, including those with special needs. The student is expected to:
      • (B) create play activities for a toddler’s growth and development such as mathematics, science, physical movement, outdoor play, art and music
      • (C) identify patterns of typical growth and development of toddlers
    • (5) The student analyzes the growth and development of preschool children of diverse backgrounds, including those with special needs. The student is expected to:
      • (B) describe the role of play in a preschool child’s growth and development
    • (6) The student analyzes the growth and development of school-age children of diverse backgrounds, including those with special needs. The student is expected to:
      • (E) develop activities appropriate for school-age children such as moderate to vigorous physical exercise, reading development, communication, listening skills, independence, conflict resolution, stress management and self-discipline
  • Basic Direct Teach Lesson

    Instructional Objectives

    Students will:

    • analyze the role of play in children and assess how play affects the principles of growth and development
    • determine the different stages of play
    • develop a play center and a three dimensional diorama to include strategies that will promote constructive and creative play
    • analyze the characteristics and safety features of various toys, games and equipment that promote physical, intellectual, emotional and social development of special needs children of different ages
    • create an advertisement to propose and describe various types of play
  • Rationale

    Children learn to cooperate with others through their play and come to understand social relationships through trial and error. As they grow older, children progress through four stages of play. These stages are solitary, parallel, associative, and cooperative play. Some children use all forms of play by adding one onto the others as they develop. Other children may stop using one form of play when the form in the next stage develops and replaces it. We are going to learn about the role of play in a preschool to school-age child’s growth and development in various areas.

  • Duration of Lesson

    Five 45 minute class periods

  • Word Wall

    Associative Play: Occurs when children begin to participate in games and activities together

    Cooperative Play: It is the form most often seen in children ages five and up. This type of play is seen in the cooperative games the younger children play

    Developmentally Appropriate: Principles and guidelines for best practice in the care and education of young children, birth through age 8

    Diorama: A scenic representation in which lifelike sculptured figures and surrounding details are realistically set against a painted background

    Emotional Development: The processes by which infants and children begin developing the capacity to experience, express, and interpret emotions

    Intellectual Development: Refers to the growth of children in such a way that their brain becomes more and more capable of understanding and evaluating concepts to make sense out of the world around them

    Parallel Play: The child plays beside, but not with, nearby children

    Physical Development: Physical development is the development of a child’s mobility, thought processes and sexual characteristics

    Social Development: Learning the skills that enable a person to interact and communicate with others in a meaningful way

    Solitary Play: The child makes no attempts to play with other children or adults nearby

  • Materials/Specialized Equipment Needed

    Equipment:

    • computer with projector for PowerPoint™ presentation
    • computers with Internet access (be sure to follow district guidelines for Internet access)
    • presenter remote

    Materials:

    • building blocks
    • children’s books
    • children’s toys
    • educational games
    • educational videos
    • interlock toys
    • jump rope
    • wooden toys

    Supplies:

    • brushes
    • cardboard paper
    • construction paper
    • dental floss
    • figurines or small props
    • glue
    • markers
    • paint
    • scissors
    • sewing thread
    • shoe box (one box per two students)
    • tape
    • copies of all handouts (see All Lesson Attachments tab)
  • Anticipatory Set

    Before class begins:

    Note to teacher: Become familiar with how to construct a diorama at How to Make a Four-Door Diorama at: http://snapguide.com/guides/make-a-four-door-diorama/

    Display as many of the lesson-related supplies (see Materials or Specialized Equipment Needed) that you have available on a table in front of the room.

    Begin the class with the following questions and have students share their responses:

    • What was your favorite toy as a child and how did it relate to your development?
    • Why was it your favorite toy?
    • How have toys changed since you were a toddler? A preschool child? A school-age child?
    • What is the role of play in children and how does it affect growth and development?
    • What are some possible learning concepts children acquire when they play each of the following games with others?
      • hide and seek
      • trucks
      • dolls
      • ball
      • puzzles
      • dramatic play
  • Direct Instruction with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Introduce lesson objectives, terms, and definitions.

    Distribute handout The Importance of Play: Toddler to School-Age Notes (see All Lesson Attachments tab). Students will be expected to take notes while viewing the slide presentation. Teacher to determine the notes which will be recorded by students.

    Introduce PowerPoint™ The Importance of Play: Toddler to School-Age (see All Lesson Attachments tab) and begin the discussion with students. Allow for questions and answers to check for understanding.

    Distribute the diagram Different Stages of Play. Students will complete handout. Allow for questions and answers to check for understanding.

    YouTube™ videos included in the PowerPoint™:

    • Promoting Healthy Brain Development: You Can Make A Difference
      Learn how you can make a difference in young children’s brain development through everyday activities. Visit www.bbbgeorgia.org for more information.
      http://youtu.be/prbLhqBsx4M
    • Special Needs Kids and the Power of Play
      Video demonstrating the healing power of fun and toys for children with disabilities and their families.
      http://youtu.be/pwWeW7PTB_w
    • The Crucial Role of Play in Early Childhood
      This video was created to demonstrate the importance of play for young children. The slide show is set to “Upside down” by Jack Johnson.
      http://youtu.be/8KtUhKVFjJI

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • checking for understanding
    • providing a copy of slide presentation

  • Guided Practice with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Scenario: You are attending a birthday party for a special needs child. You must purchase a toy, game, or equipment for the child with a $40.00 budget.

    Distribute Happy Birthday! handout. Students must describe the toy and analyze the characteristics and safety features of the toy, game or equipment they selected that promote physical, intellectual, emotional and social development of children with special needs. They may research the Internet at:
    http://www.ableplay.org/content/search-products

    Have students present their information to their classmates.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • pair up students who need extra support with students who are advanced or gifted and talented. Pairing them with responsible students helps them to learn from the model their peer is showing
    • allow students to provide input in their own way. This includes written as well as verbal responses.

  • Independent Practice/Laboratory Experience with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Distribute Learning Center Diorama Project (see All Lesson Attachments tab).

    With a partner, create a three dimensional diorama. Create a student learning center that will promote constructive and creative play for a toddler, preschool or school-age child. Students will research types of centers, include a written report on the type of center they select and create the diorama. The center and written report will include:

    • how it will promote the importance of play in physical, intellectual, emotional and/or social development of children
    • activities in the areas of mathematics, science, physical movement, outdoor play, art, and music
    • activities appropriate for school-age children such as moderate to vigorous physical exercise, reading development, communication, listening skills, independence, conflict resolution, stress management, and self-discipline

    Distribute Rubric for Learning Center Diorama Project (see All Lesson Attachments tab) so that students may understand what is expected.

    Have students view the following Snapguide to understand how to construct the diorama:

    How to Make a Four-Door Diorama
    http://snapguide.com/guides/make-a-four-door-diorama/

    Students will be provided with time to complete their projects. Provide guidance as needed. Allow student to proofread and edit each other’s work and practice the oral component of their projects before class presentations.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • repeated instructions
    • opportunity to repeat instructions
    • written instructions

  • Lesson Closure

    Review lesson objectives, terms, and definitions.

    Students will create an advertisement of:

    • what they have learned
    • how they learned it
    • what application possibilities the knowledge/skills have
    • propose and describe various types of play in different stages of development that would promote healthy physical, mental, social, emotional, and social development

    They will present their advertisements to the class during lesson closure.
    They will post their advertisements in the classroom. The students will go on a shopping tour for information and jot down notes they wish to remember.

    Design a contest of the best advertisement within the classroom to encourage creativity and innovation. Allow the students to vote for the best advertisement and award the Certificate of Achievement (see All Lesson Attachments tab). This certificate can be added to a portfolio. Other certificate templates can be found on Microsoft Word™ and designed with your school logo and mascot if desired.

  • Summative/End of Lesson Assessment with Special Education Modifications/Accommodations

    Team presentations will be assessed with previously provided rubric and personal reflection assignment.

    Students will each write a one page personal reflection on what they learned from this lesson and how they plan to use the information now and in the future.

    Individualized Education Plan (IEP) for all special education students must be followed. Examples of accommodations may include, but are not limited to:

    • provide students with a checklist or rubric to help them organize and complete all steps of the process
    • allow students to record their presentations in advance and present the recording (audio or visual) if they are frightened by presenting to a crowd. Another method would be to allow them to present to you first, then present to the class after you have assured them that they have a good product to share

  • References/Resources

    • Microsoft Clip Art: Used with permission from Microsoft.

    Textbook:

    • Decker, C. (2011). Child development: Early stages through age 12. (5th ed.). Tinley Park: Goodheart-Willcox Company.

    Websites:

    • AblePlay
      AblePlayTM is a toy rating system and website that provides comprehensive information on toys for children with special needs. AblePlay was created so parents, special educators, therapists and others can make the best decisions when purchasing products for children in their lives with disabilities.
      http://www.ableplay.org/content/search-products
    • National Association for the Education of Young Children
      Articles and information on children.
      http://www.naeyc.org

    YouTube™:

    • Promoting Healthy Brain Development: You Can Make A Difference
      Learn how you can make a difference in young children’s brain development through everyday activities. Visit www.bbbgeorgia.org for more information.
      http://youtu.be/prbLhqBsx4M
    • Special Needs Kids and the Power of Play
      Video demonstrating the healing power of fun and toys for children with disabilities and their families.
      http://youtu.be/pwWeW7PTB_w
    • The Crucial Role of Play in Early Childhood
      This video was created to demonstrate the importance of play for young children. The slide show is set to “Upside down” by Jack Johnson.
      http://youtu.be/8KtUhKVFjJI
  • Additional Required Components

    English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS) Strategies

    • Ask students to repeat your instructions to be sure they know what is expected of them before each phase of the lesson.
    • Discuss vocabulary in detail and make sure everyone has a firm grasp on it before moving forward with the lesson.
    • Use graphic organizers and visuals to explain the lesson in detail.
    • Print fill in the blank handouts of the PowerPoint™ notes for students to follow along with the lesson.
    • Utilize the Four Corners Vocabulary/ Word Wall Activity http://cte.sfasu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/Four-Corner-Vocabulary2.pdf.
  • College and Career Readiness Connection

    AchieveTexas Career Cluster Crosswalks

    The Career Cluster Crosswalks housed on the AchieveTexas website http://www.achievetexas.org/index.html provide Texas teachers with a direct connection between their CTE course TEKS and the College and Career Readiness Standards (CCRS). Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies and Cross-Disciplinary integration are the focus of the CCRS. These college and career readiness standards are essential in the planning and delivery of CTE lessons. The extent to which the integration occurs is determined by the methods and strategies utilized by each teacher.

    Career Cluster Crosswalks for Education and Training, Hospitality and Tourism and Human Services Career Clusters can be found at:
    http://www.achievetexas.org/Career%20Cluster%20Crosswalks.htm

  • Recommended Strategies

    Reading Strategies

    Current Events:
    Assign students to read about the importance of play for toddler to school-age children. Information can be found in newspaper articles, magazines, journals, and online print.
    Suggestions:

    • Helping Your Preschool Child (see All Lesson Attachments tab)
    • Encourage students to connect reading to their life experiences or prior knowledge.
  • Quotes

    The ages between birth and age 5 are the foundation upon which successful lives are built.
    -Laura Bush

    You can get help from teachers, but you are going to have to learn a lot by yourself, sitting alone in a room.
    -Theodor Seuss Geisel

    Children are great imitators. So give them something great to imitate.
    -Anonymous

    Children are our most valuable resource.
    -Herbert Hoover, 31st U.S. president

    Only where children gather is there any real chance of fun.
    -Mignon McLaughlin, journalist and author

    I continue to believe that if children are given the necessary tools to succeed, they will succeed beyond their wildest dreams!
    -David Vitter, U.S. senator

  • Multimedia/Visual Strategies

    PowerPoint™:

    • The Importance of Play: Infancy to School-Age
    • Presentation Notes for The Importance of Play: Infancy to School-Age

    Technology:

    YouTube™:

    • Promoting Healthy Brain Development: You Can Make A Difference
      Learn how you can make a difference in young children’s brain development through everyday activities. Visit www.bbbgeorgia.org for more information.
      http://youtu.be/prbLhqBsx4M
    • Special Needs Kids and the Power of Play
      Video demonstrating the healing power of fun and toys for children with disabilities and their families.
      http://youtu.be/pwWeW7PTB_w
    • The Crucial Role of Play in Early Childhood
      This video was created to demonstrate the importance of play for young children. The slide show is set to “Upside down” by Jack Johnson.
      http://youtu.be/8KtUhKVFjJI

    Files for downloading:

  • Graphic Organizers/Handout

    Graphic Organizers:

    • Different Stages of Play
    • Different Stages of Play (Key)
    • The Importance of Play: Toddlers to School-Age Notes

    Handouts:

    • Certificate of Achievement
    • Happy Birthday!
    • Helping Your Preschool Child
    • Learning Center Diorama Project
    • Rubric for Learning Center Diorama Project

    Files for downloading:

  • Writing Strategies

    Journal Entries:

    • As a child care provider, what safety features would be important to you in a toy?
    • Why is it important to play with your child and how does it help them develop?
    • What is the interrelationship between the various types of development and the stages of play?

    Writing Strategy:

    RAFT Writing Strategy
    Role – Child care director
    Audience – parents
    Format – newsletter
    Topic – benefits of play for children

    Writing Prompt:

    • (5) The student analyzes the growth and development of preschool children of diverse backgrounds, including those with special needs. The student is expected to:
      • (B) describe the role of play in a preschool child’s growth and development
        Think about the importance of play in a preschool child’s growth and development. Write an essay in which you state your position on the role of play in a preschool child’s development. (10th and 11th grade persuasive writing)

  • Communication 90 Second Speech Topics

    • The type of play I enjoyed the most as a child was__________because …
    • Three benefits of play for children are …
    • As I look to the future, I am looking forward to playing with my child because …
  • Other Essential Lesson Components

    Enrichment activity

    • Have students create and present a lesson plan to teach preschoolers new skills in the areas of vigorous physical exercise, reading development, communication, listening skills and self-reliance.
    • Students can determine one teaching strategy that promotes physical development, social development, emotional development or cognitive and language development.
    • Have students write at least 10 possible ways parents or caregivers can encourage creativity in preschool children.
    • Have students debate “Why do you think television does or does not promote creativity in preschool children?”

    TED Talks:

    TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks videos and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event.

    The video below is related to this lesson. Allow students to view the video, and lead a discussion concerning the TED Talk.

    • Shimpei Takahashi: Play this game to come up with original ideas
      Shimpei Takahashi always dreamed of designing toys. But when he started work as a toy developer, he found that the pressure to use data as a starting point for design quashed his creativity. In this short, funny talk, Takahashi describes how he got his ideas flowing again, and shares a simple game anyone can play to generate new ideas. (In Japanese with English subtitles.)
      http://www.ted.com/talks/shimpei_takahashi_play_this_game_to_come_up_with_original_ideas
  • Family/Community Connection

    • Invite a pediatrician or child psychologist to explain the temperament, skills, and development of preschoolers.
    • Interview a preschooler about his or her favorite play activity. Have the child draw a picture. Write a brief summary about the interview, including quotes from the child. Display the child’s drawing and your brief summary in the classroom.
  • CTSO connection

    Family, Career and Community Leaders of America (FCCLA) http://www.fcclainc.org

    FCCLA Family First Project –
    http://www.fcclainc.org/content/families-first/

    The FCCLA Families First is a national peer education program through which youth gain a better understanding of how families work and learn skills to become strong family members. Its goals are to: help youth become strong family members and leaders for today and tomorrow and strengthen the family as the basic unit of society. To help members focus their projects, Families First offers five units. Members may complete projects in one or several units. There is no particular order to them; although, “Families Today” might be a good place to start. It covers topics that provide a general overview of families and related issues:
    Families Today: Understand and celebrate families
    You-Me-Us: Strengthen family relationships
    Meet the Challenge: Overcome obstacles together
    Balancing Family and Career: Manage multiple responsibilities
    Parent Practice: Learn to nurture children.

  • Service Learning Projects

    Successful service learning project ideas originate from student concerns and needs. Allow students to brainstorm about service projects pertaining to lesson.
    http://www.nylc.org/

    Students can organize a toy drive and donate the proceeds to a local charity for under privileged children.

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