Introduction

This essay seeks to describe the learning events for children during the planned activity day. It was meant to make children integrate numeracy skills, skills of problem solving as well as reasoning in their learning. However, initially, the essay explains the justification for a self-directed play for children. Thereafter, it explores the implementation of the activity. Under this part, the essay assesses the efficacy of the planned intervention. Its assessment involves juxtaposing the results against the patterns on how children learn. Next, the essay evaluates the activity on the basis of whether the aims set at the beginning were achieved. Lastly, the essay offers recommendations on how future intervention projects should be carried out.

Rationale

Psychologists and educationists have intensively conducted experimental research on the subject of children and play. In other words, they have struggled to understand the actual role of play in a child’s life and especially with regard to his or her education. There is no doubt that the role of play in a child’s learning is so central that educationists and psychologists have widely researched and published on the subject. As a result, play is highly recommended as a means to make children learn faster and more (Bornstein, 2009). Through research, it has been established that while showing something to children, it, henceforth, makes children cognize and remember it. Connectively, play is considered an effective tool for learning among children. However, it is important to note that play is culture-specific (Tucker, 2010). Children in different places may not necessarily apply the same rules in their learning. Moreover, some of the characteristics that teachers should entrench in the play are pleasure and enjoyment, spontaneity and voluntarism, no extrinsic goals, active participation and involvement, and clear learning outcomes. This has popularly been referred to as inquiry-based learning in which participants are engaged in a problem-oriented learning method (Thirteen.org, 2004). In this case, it is expected that by the end of the play, which would be child-initiated and teacher-facilitated, children will be able to not only recall but also understand the order, colors and number of shapes required to make an equivalent of a mathematical addition.

Implementation and Assessment

To accomplish the above mission, the children were made to sit on their desks. The teacher explained the purpose, nature and type of the play that they were to be involved in. Thereafter, a few materials were introduced. These included oil paint, sponge with different shapes and T-shirt patterns. The children were to repeat the shapes on the T-shirts by printing them using the sponge. They were to do so by following the symbols or shapes on the T-shirt that was already printed. To achieve this, there was a song that was introduced. The words of the song mentioned the types of the shapes, their number in a pattern and their colors. Each child was to sing the song through and through as he or she printed the shapes repeatedly. It was believed that through singing and relaxed environment, they would learn not only easily but also with permanence.

Evaluation

At the end of the play, the children’s results were checked against the outcomes, goals and objectives set out at the beginning of the play. The first goal was to enable the child to repeat the right shape several times in order that the pattern on the T-shirt could be continued. If they successfully performed, it would mean that they had succeeded in identifying, describing and creating a repetitive pattern of the shapes. In doing so, the children achieved the following: reasoning ability, numeracy prowess and problem solving skills. In this case, it could be concluded that more than 60% of the children achieved over 70% requirements or outcomes of the play. This is because most of them were able to identify that each pattern had three shapes, an aspect of numeracy. In addition, the alignment and direction of the shapes were also well done. This was seen as an aspect of reasoning while differentiating what color to use for different shapes was a test of the ability to solve problems.

Recommendations

In order to make future projects more effective, there is a need to reduce the role of the teacher than that of the children. In this context, the more they participate, the more they learn; conclusively,  they should be more involved than the teacher. The latter’s role merely be a directional one. In addition, a lesser technical game should be used for this grade of children (Frobose, 2008). In fact, the concept of play as a learning approach for children emanates from the age. Therefore, there should be more play than technical involvement for younger kids than for older ones. As age proceeds, more technical and abstract concepts could be applied. Further, it is recommended that the venue could be changed to a different place other than the classroom that is more relaxed. Other than just being different, the venue would see to it that other children in other classes are not distracted. If getting another venue is difficult, then the sitting arrangement could be changed.

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