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Practise coding with 5 playful experiences

Develop your understanding of the five characteristics of play and what they look like for children with visual impairments.
4 year-old Connors is playing with a sighted friend
We say that learning through play happens when the activity is experienced as joyful; involves active, engaged, mindful thinking; involves iteration (experimentation, hypothesis testing and problem solving); helps children find meaning in what they are doing or learning; and is socially interactive.

These five characteristics ebb and flow as children engage in learning through play activities. But in order to observe them, practitioners and designers need to know what they look like.

During this week, you’ll be able to practise observing five play situations and code the state of play of different children for each of their characteristics.

We now recommend that you download the table below and the observation sheets. In the following steps, you will use them to identify certain behavioural indicators and practise coding each of the characteristics.

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To do this, you will:

  • Watch the children’s video. You may need to watch it several times.
  • Follow the child’s participation in the game or activity and make notes in the observation sheet.
  • Note what you see and what might cause changes in the child’s participation.

We can then have an informed discussion based on your and our observations:

  • What we/you saw and noted?
  • How did we/you record the child’s experience on the observation sheet?
  • What positively influenced the child’s participation throughout the process?
  • What, if anything, limited the child’s participation?
  • How important was the adult’s positioning and guidance during the play?
  • Do you have any immediate ideas for improving the activity?

Are you ready? Then let’s start with the first video and let’s code the characteristic: Joyful.

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Observing Visually Impaired Children Learning Through Play

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FutureLearn - Learning For Life

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