Researching children's learning and play in a Chinese context: Children's perspectives on their play and learning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Children's conceptions or interpretations of the relationship between play and learning have not been studied much in the early childhood education studies. To better understand play and learning in the Chinese context, this paper will discuss the outcome of a study which sought to investigate children's understanding and interpretation of the relationship between play and learning from children's perspectives, and to explore which play type produces the most learning outcomes. Hong Kong Chinese children (n = 24; 3.5–6.3 years; mean age 4.78 years) from two kindergartens were observed and videotaped with consent. Informal and video-cued recall interviews were conducted after the children experienced the play and learning activities. The findings indicate that the children gave meaning to the play activities. For example, some of them believed that they had learned practical life skills for future use through role playing. This implies that there may have been certain sociocultural underpinnings in the children's interpretations of their activities. Moreover, the children's retrospective reports about their experiential activities reflected a contradictory view to traditional Chinese culture, which juxtaposes play with learning. The children's interpretations of their play and learning activities may have pedagogical and political implications in implementing a play-based learning approach. Copyright © 2019 EECERA.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)551-565
JournalEuropean Early Childhood Education Research Journal
Volume27
Issue number4
Early online dateJun 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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Learning
learning
interpretation
Role Playing
Hong Kong
kindergarten
video
childhood
Outcome Assessment (Health Care)
Interviews
Education
interview
education

Citation

Wu, S.-C. (2019). Researching children's learning and play in a Chinese context: Children's perspectives on their play and learning. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, 27(4), 551-565. doi: 10.1080/1350293X.2019.1634241

Keywords

  • Children's perspectives
  • Meaning-making
  • Learning at play
  • Sociocultural underpinnings
  • Video-cued recall interviews