We present a conceptual analysis, grounded in empirical data, of how young children’s creative play is framed by the ‘pedagogic culture’ within which the child is playing. Drawing on data from a research study with the broad aim of documenting children’s creative play in Western play-based early childhood education, we gathered exploratory qualitative observations, self-initiated iPad video diaries and researcher-led activities to describe children’s creative play. We adapted the Analysing Children’s Creative Thinking Framework as a starting point for coding and the analyses focused on three contextual cues within the pedagogic culture – space, interpersonal collaborations and materials. We ground our discussion in a contextualist theoretical frame to demonstrate that in isolation, each contextual cue presents a degree of framing to children’s creative play. When analysed as a synergy of contextual cues, however, we begin to see that the dynamic make-up of each of the contexts, and the interplay among them, create a ‘pedagogic culture’ that transforms children’s creative play. We present ‘stories’ of each pedagogic culture that we observed, to describe how children’s creative play manifested within each culture.
SOURCE: Arnott, L., & Duncan, P. “Exploring the pedagogic culture of creative play in early childhood education.” Journal of Early Childhood Research, August 23, 2019.
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