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Play is an important part of children's learning and development. Find articles on how to intentionally connect play and learning, ideas to share with families, and the latest research about learning and play.

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Colorful swings
Article
Teaching Young Children
August 1, 2018

Message in a Backpack™ Things Every Parent Should Know about Play

Play supports children’s learning in so many ways. Make sure your child has time to play to promote cognitive, language and literacy, physical, social, and emotional development.

Authored by

Authored by: Laurel Bongiorno
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Child pretending to be a firefighter in a cardboard firetruck
Article
Teaching Young Children
August 1, 2018

Talking with Parents about Play and Learning

We can help families understand why play is critical for preschoolers’ learning and development—and how play sets children up for future school success.

Authored by

Authored by: Laurel Bongiorno
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Children playing with chalk outdoors
Article
Teaching Young Children
August 1, 2018

Preschool Play Plans: Chalk Play

This is the third article in Preschool Play Plans, a TYC series. This installment focuses on different ways to play with chalk.

Authored by

Authored by: Blakely Bundy, ​Diane E. Levin, members of TRUCE
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Boy playing in sand table
Blog
July 18, 2018

The Importance of Sand and Water Play

The sand table and the water table can be two of the most popular areas of the classroom for young children, but it is important to remember that these areas are essential to the classroom for higher-level learning. 

Authored by

Authored by: Sarah Vanover
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Children playing in play centers at a library
Article
Young Children
July 1, 2018

Public Libraries Harness the Power of Play

Thanks to a nationwide parent education initiative called Every Child Ready to Read (ECRR), an increasing number of librarians are focusing on helping parents interact with their young children in meaningful ways to increase vocabulary development.

Authored by

Authored by: Donna C. Celano, Jillian J. Knapczyk, Susan B. Neuman
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child playing with blocks

At Home with Makerspaces

Whether you call them makerspaces, hackerspaces, or DIY labs, the idea is the same—they’re places where kids can tinker, invent, and build to their heart's content. They are great for fostering creativity and hands-on learning.
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Teacher helping student with project
Blog
May 2, 2018

Fingerprints Upon My Heart

After forming a close bond with a student in his classroom, this preschool teacher shares his testimony on the power of play—and how it helped him through grief and retrospection after the passing of a loved one.

Authored by

Authored by: Darius Phelps
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Children running
Article
Teaching Young Children
April 1, 2018

Bringing Active Play Indoors

Increasing core strength and hand–eye coordination can help preschoolers improve their gross motor abilities. Consider these activities for bringing active play inside!

Authored by

Authored by: Lisa Mufson Bresson
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Child playing with shapes
Article
Teaching Young Children
April 1, 2018

Play Games, Learn Math! Pattern Block Puzzles

Children learn about shapes by playing with them and manipulating them. The games in this article guide children’s learning as they do both.

Authored by

Authored by: Kristen E. Reed, Jessica Mercer Young
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Children playing in mud
Article
Teaching Young Children
April 1, 2018

Preschool Play Plans: Mud-Luscious Play

This is the second article in Preschool Play Plans, a TYC series. These are ideas for open-ended indoor and outdoor activities that use inexpensive or free materials—bubbles, mud, chalk, playdough, and cardboard boxes.

Authored by

Authored by: Blakely Bundy, ​Diane E. Levin, members of TRUCE
Members Only