Discuss time to play: early childhood education.

Write 9 pages thesis on the topic time to play: early childhood education. This paper explores the value of play and creativity and how these affect the development of children in the early years. It aims to help educators understand that play is an effective tool for learning and developing creativity, which is one essential trait and skill children need to have and hone.
Creativity has been found to be something that sets an individual apart from the rest. With the current globalization trends, creativity is fast becoming in demand and people who manifest creative skills and traits usually advance further than their non-creative peers. Creativity may be defined in a myriad of ways. Duffy (1998) described the abilities exhibited by creative people as “seeing things in fresh ways. learning from past experience and relating this to new situations. thinking along unorthodox lines and breaking barriers. using non-traditional approaches to solving problems. going further than the information given. creating something unique and original. “ (May, 2007, pp. 101-102).
For young children, play and creativity are inextricably related. When children are deep into their play, all things are possible. There is a thin line between reality and fantasy, and in children’s minds, they are fused. This idea is consistent with Malaguzzi’s suggestion that ‘reason and dream’ are things that can, and should belong together (May, 2007).

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People have conceptualized theories of play, among them, Piaget, who categorized levels of play as functional, symbolic and games with rules (May, 2007). Consistent with his theories in cognitive development, the levels of play follow the pattern from concrete thinking to abstract thinking (Piaget & Inhelder, 1969). Functional or practice play involves the use of materials or toys. Then they move on to symbolic play wherein the materials may be imagined to be something else other than what it stands for or how it is normally used. Games with rules play according to rules they may have made up themselves or generally agreed on when playing the game (Brewer, 2001). Bruce (1991) refined Piaget’s play levels as exploratory, representational and free-flow play.&nbsp. She describes the free-flow play as the child being immersed in his ideas, thoughts, feelings, and relationships during the play session, and it is in this state of play that he comes up with creativity.&nbsp.
 
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