My Beliefs About Play and Children’s Learning

The following is a personal teaching philosophy that still guides the way I set up our home learning environment, play activities for my children, and my day-to-day interactions with them as a homeschooling mom.

I firmly believe that children LEARN through play. Play is a context for learning that allows for the expression of personality and uniqueness, enhances dispositions such as curiosity and creativity, enables children to develop relationships and concepts, and stimulates a sense of well-being (Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace, 2009).

It’s crucial to know the children we teach. Each child has unique strengths, preferred learning styles, and varied prior learning experiences and knowledge. By harnessing their individual strengths and learning styles, we can help them develop positive attitudes about learning, fostering confident and self-motivated learners.

I also believe that all children explore and learn at their own pace. It is our responsibility to make the learning process challenging, stimulating, and vibrant for them. Creating an aesthetically pleasing environment with the presence of color and materials contributes to an enhanced visual and emotive learning experience, benefiting their development (MacNaughton and Williams, 2009).

Adhering to the Reggio philosophy, I view the environment as the third teacher. An environment filled with natural light, order, and beauty inspires children to delve deeper into their interests. It encourages collaboration, communication, exploration, and respects children as capable individuals by providing them with authentic materials and tools (An Everyday Story).

As a teacher and home educator, my role is to instill a passion for learning in children, help them discover the joys and wonders of play, and develop an inquisitive mind.

Being aware of and planning for children’s interests is an essential aspect of my approach. By observing them at play, recognizing their unasked questions and emerging interests, and providing opportunities for further exploration, I can stretch their abilities and facilitate their developmental growth. This involves introducing resources and learning experiences beyond their perceived capabilities, allowing them to encourage their emerging abilities.

I strongly believe that children should be viewed as active participants in the co-construction of knowledge in the classroom, with the ability to self-direct their learning. This includes being aware of spontaneous “teachable moments” that stem from child-initiated ideas and activities and extending on their learning.

In conclusion, through my experiences as a teacher and homeschooling mom, I have developed a deep understanding of the importance of play in children’s learning. By creating a supportive environment, fostering children’s individual strengths and learning styles, and embracing child-initiated learning, we can nurture confident, curious, and self-motivated learners.

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Q: Do children only learn through play?

A: While play is a crucial aspect of children’s learning, it is not the only avenue for learning. Children also benefit from structured educational activities, guided instruction, and social interactions.

Q: How can teachers incorporate play into their lessons?

A: Teachers can incorporate play into their lessons by creating engaging activities that allow for exploration, creativity, and problem-solving. Incorporating hands-on materials, encouraging imaginative play, and providing opportunities for collaboration can all enhance the learning experience.

Q: Can play-based learning be effective for older children?

A: Absolutely! Play-based learning can be adapted for older children by incorporating more complex challenges and tasks. It can foster critical thinking, problem-solving skills, and creativity, even in older age groups.


Understanding the role of play in children’s learning is essential for educators and parents alike. By embracing play as a context for learning, recognizing children’s unique strengths and learning styles, and fostering their curiosity and creativity, we can create an environment where children thrive and develop a genuine passion for learning. So let’s encourage play, exploration, and discovery to nurture lifelong learners. Visit Instant Global News for more insightful content.