The “Real” Approach to Learning

By Laura Jones from Bright Buttons Childminding

12th October 2018
Laura Jones blog

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The “real” approach to learning – i.e. providing children with REAL resources and REAL experiences!


Although plastic play materials provide opportunity for matching, colour recognition and playing pretend with traditional plastic items – it’s not the same as providing real items or experiences.


As The Curiosity Approach suggests, children feel honoured and valued when we give them ‘REAL’ things. Providing them with nothing but plastic only suggests that their play isn’t real. 


Concentration can improve and engagement levels often increase as children learn REAL LIFE skills, such as learning how to have a conversation on a phone or take a photo with a real camera. 


Resources like these today are authentic and used in every day real life, so children can relate to them. 


It’s also great for a sensory experience because pretend plastic toys often feel the same.


Yes plastic might be more durable but… how can children ever learn to handle these electronic items if they never experience handling them? 


How can children respect the world we live in if they believe all resources are indestructible? 


Surely we should be teaching children that things have value? E.g a bone China tea set, not just a plastic one. 


Also, with regards to REAL experiences- what good is playing with animals, if the child has never been to a farm or a zoo? It’s about providing these first-hand opportunities that will in turn make their play more purposeful.


Are you keeping it real? 

This is some of the children on one of our many adventures! Linking the seaside and the Sea Life Centre to our Under the Sea topic – helping make real connections in their learning.

For more EYFS activity ideas, inspiration or insight into the life of a Childminder, you can find me at @brightbuttonschildminding both on Facebook and Instagram.

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