This week...It's been a hugely busy week so far with a two day visit to a school in Bristol exploring provision and interactions in Reception and Year 1. Really great to see schools beginning to want to embrace childhood but also a reminder that it's not just as simple as 'continuous provision in Year 1'. Neoliberalism doesn't let go quietly but in this particular school they wanted to begin the adventure away from its grubby grasp. So that's a great thing!
I learned so much as part of my visit, primarily because the team were committed to maximising the opportunities for children to immerse in the outdoors and choose freely. So the ideal time to learn from childhood and what it's looking for - some amazing use of messaging as well as a Stroke of Genius using sand timers to create a puzzle, something I've never seen before!
It felt good to be back in schools once more and one or two are now making enquiries for the near future so it's an indication that the world of face to face is slowly opening up - following protocols and plenty of LFTs of course! Next up is Coventry and I can't wait because it's where my grandparents and parents lived, so an emotional visit to a degree in amongst exploring provision and co-play :)
The online sessions around the Message Centre, Drawing Club and Adventure Island have been fantastic and it's so good seeing how adults want to step into the joy of learning and Time Together. I've updated the programme for June 2021 and you'll be able to catch Drawing Club and the Message Centre via the button below (and Adventure Island or Play Projects for next week for that matter...)
Probably the most exciting thing of all has been a development within my weekly Wednesday Joy! CPD sessions that has unearthed a really simple way of adding magic to the Home Corner - it's been shaped by those in Joy! and the feedback has been so good to hear. I can't wait to pull it altogether because the group can feel the possibilities for enriching language, co-play and immersion into make-believe. Keep eyes peeled because it's going to be a beaut, I can feel it...
It's also a timely reminder that the Joy! Patreon group exists. We meet each Wednesday at 8pm UK Time and share ideas, research and trial concepts - it's like the home of the Play People and you're warmly invited to come and join us. It costs just £10 a month which I like to think is a bargain for all the richness that it brings as a community :)
You can join here
Lastly I've had an amazing chat with an upper primary teacher in Shetland who has been exploring the joy of Drawing Club and Play Projects within her week. She's been blown away by the engagement and the learning the children have shown her. It's so good to know that teachers further up in schools are finding childhood. I hope that excites you too!
I also hope wherever you are, you're feeling the joy of play - keep playing and keep playing hard. Childhood needs you like never before,
Have a great weekend when it arrives, take care - Greg
Can I Go Play Now..? is committed to widening the understanding of the magic of children's play as an educational tool. Child-centred, play-based learning is where it's truly at....