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Learning through Exploration

Play is a powerful medium for learning. In play, children enact the three Fs of childhood – friendship, fantasy, and fairness (Paley, 2010), they learn about diversities, engage with familiar and unfamiliar materials, and share their own perspectives and experiences while considering others. In play, children are agents. They are doers. As Albert Einstein posited: ‘Play is the highest form of research.’ Children collaborate and make discoveries through play. They author stories. They take risks. They engage in resistance and plot subversive actions. They learn. (Mariana Souto-Manning, )

“The 6 C’s”

1. Collaboration: the ability to work with others toward a shared goal

2. Communication: expressing thought and needs, either verbal or non-verbal

3. Content: how children demonstrate what they know and what they’re thinking about (with or without instruction from an adult)

4. Critical Thinking: the ability to analyze and sift through information in order to make sense of it and apply it in the context of the environment

5. Creative Innovation: what allows content and critical thinking to come together to produce something new or different

6. Confidence: demonstrating a desire and ability to explore, learn, take risks, and try new things

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