Summary of experience:
I really enjoyed observing for this notebook activity because for the first time in my whole life, I had to determine which toys fostered symbolic play and then I had to analyze why a certain toy was beneficial in promoting symbolic play. I observed three different classrooms for this experiment: Cherub’s Preschool, Bethel’s Mom2Mom group, and Mrs. Dexter’s kindergarten class. In the Cherub’s Preschool, the children had multiple toys that promoted symbolic learning. For example, Brody found some farm animals in a bin and he took them out and began to make the sounds that those animals make. This demonstrated symbolic play because he was able to place a symbol (the sound of the animal) to the animal. He also noticed that there were two large cows and one small cow. By reflecting on his experiences and his knowledge about cows, he assumed that the two larger cows were the parents to the smaller cow. Trey and I spent quite a bit of time playing with the Hot Wheels racecar track which had garages, tracks, and even gas stations. This specific racecar track definitely promoted symbolic play because it gave children the opportunity to practice what they see happening in the real world, such as watching a parent pump gas or park the car in the garage.
In my second observation at the Mom2Mom group, there was a substantially greater amount of housekeeping play going on as well as block play. As soon as I walked in the door, a group of children came rushing over to me and lead me to a table. One child took my order, after my order was placed, another child came by with a cup of tea and asked if I would like some. As soon as that child left, my waitress came back and gave me my sou...
... middle of paper ...
...cial Development, initiative versus guilt, “Children who successfully accomplish the developmental tasks of this stage will emerge confident and competent. They will believe that they can plan and complete a task independently” (Pg. 68, Chapter 3- Erik Erikson). As a future teacher, it will be vital that I allow children to learn on their own and if they make a mistake, it is okay. Research shows that children are likely to feel less competent and take fewer risks in learning when they are constantly reprimanded for their actions. Of course, I cannot just observe two children getting into a fight, but I can help them work through it in a way that will be a learning experience for the both of them. So basically what I am saying is that it is crucial that as a teacher I remember that every moment can be a learning moment, no matter if symbolic play is involved or not.
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