As it is rightly said, “Children learn as they play. Most importantly, in play, children learn how to learn.” – O. Fred Donaldson
Teaching through play has always been close to my heart as I believe; play is a gateway and the foundation of learning. Through play, children learn all the critical skills that are needed to succeed and be engaged in the world. Learning, as we are all aware is different for every child because each one learns at his/her own pace, learning in his/her own style, and guided by his/her own intelligence. Through self-directed play, children make choices and decisions, confront uncertainty, overcome fears, and learn to work together as a team. Especially in recent times, ‘Play’ plays an important role to develop skills that are required in the present world. It is also observed that when teaching children, Teachers need to think out-of-the-box to keep learning engaging and fun.
We as Educators must focus on developing the 4 important C’s – Critical Thinking, Communication, Creativity and Collaboration. The need of the hour is to hone these soft-skills that will ensure that a child will be best prepared to engage in the futuristic workplace while having successful and meaningful relationships in life.
In schools, we rarely set out to learn by playing. Instead of dismissing it as ‘just fun’, one must understand that play is a very important activity that children use in order to learn about and interact with the world, to develop their mental, physical and social skills which are required to succeed in their adult lives. Children learn concepts best through play and the power of play is seen when children master the concepts through fun, rather than learning in a mundane theory class.
At VIBGYOR, we place emphasis on teaching concepts in a stress-free environment through play, where each concept is taught keeping the child’s pace and interest in mind. Through play and integrated learning, we realise that we can put children on a discovery path to lifelong learning, innovation and creativity. One of the major distinctive facts which set VIBGYOR Group of Schools apart is the integration of SPA (Sports & the Performing Arts) curriculum with in-classroom learning. The exposure that is given to the child through various SPA activities further facilitates the development of kinesthetic and spatial skills. Our aim is to provide a rich environment for our young learners and to develop their natural curiosity and creativity. The activity-based curriculum of VIBGYOR focuses on offering children unique opportunities for playfulness – to explore, engage and connect with the world we live in.
As Vince Gowmon pertinently reminds us that, ‘Play is the language of children. Have you spoken it to them lately?. As Educators, it is our duty to constantly remind ourselves this and ensure that play is always protected and an integral part of children’s learning.
Principal, VIBGYOR High – Horamavu, Bengaluru