Heuristic play and loose parts (part 3)
Observing toddlers during Heuristic Play
All toddlers will use the resources in a Heuristic Play collection in their own unique way. By closing observing which things different children are interested in, how they manipulate different objects and how long they concentrate for you will be building up your understanding of their individual interests, skills and attitudes. This will provide a wealth of information on which to play what experiences to offer children next in order to extend and deepen their learning.
Observe how a toddler:
- Interacts with the resources. Is he/she calm and thoughtful or active and enthusiastic?
- Spends time involved in a particular investigation or exploration.
- Goes back to the same exploration on many different occasions, developing his or her skills.
- Poses challenges and finds solutions to problems.
Share these observations with parents, pointing out what children are learning when they explore and investigate in this way. This will help parents to see the value of open ended resources and child-initiated play.