August 2020 Newsletter – Remembering the Principles of Developmentally Appropriate Practice: Reflecting on Play and Motivation

In light of the stress that is impacting so many children and families, teachers must ensure that the very best practices of teaching and learning are present in the classroom.  The additional stress of improper teaching strategies can be avoided when teachers reflect on research-based best practices of encouraging play and following children’s motivation to learn.

Here are some things to think about to ensure that children are receiving high-quality early learning experiences despite the restrictions put in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • Play is an important vehicle for developing self-regulation and promoting language, cognition, and social competence.
    1. What are a few ways that I can incorporate academic concepts into children’s play, using a variety of safe materials?
    2. How can we use the outdoor environment as an extended classroom?
    3. Is there an opportunity to alter the daily schedule to allow for longer, uninterrupted periods of play?
    4. How can we modify the dramatic play area to promote exploration that doesn’t require dress-up clothes?
    5. What can we learn about children by observing their play from a distance?
  • Children’s experiences shape their motivation and approaches to learning.
    1. We are responsible for enforcing new policies in order to maintain a safe environment. How can we do so in a positive and motivating manner, rather than a punitive manner?
    2. How does the tone of my voice and the language I use when speaking to children help them discover a love of learning and education?
    3. Fieldtrips and class visitors are likely off-limits right now. How could we leverage technology to explore the world outside of the classroom?

What are some ways we can engage with children that will strengthen their approaches to learning and spark curiosity and exploration?

For the main article Remembering the Principles of Developmentally Appropriate Practice, CLICK HERE

For the article Reflecting on Development and Relationships, CLICK HERE

For the article Reflecting on Variety and Influences, CLICK HERE

For the article Director’s Corner: Creating Community, CLICK HERE