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Early Childhood Education and Care > About us > Transition to school > Age appropriate pedagogies > Characteristics >



Encouraging children to make connections through imagination and creativity, to explore alternate worlds and ways of thinking. These worlds, not bounded by reality, offer the freedom children need to innovate and enact new possibilities.

'Playful' unpacked

Teachers may:

Children may:

  • provide extended periods of time, appropriate spaces and imaginative resources for children to engage in playful learning

  • clearly articulate the curriculum intent that underpins each playful learning experience

  • encourage children, through their playfulness, to explore alternate worlds and ways of thinking

  • create a classroom that becomes a place where children have the freedom to innovate and enact new possibilities.

  • engage socially, emotionally, physically and cognitively within intentional spaces and with intentional resources

  • interact with their teacher in meaningful playful learning opportunities

  • participate in playful learning experiences across a range of curriculum areas and within a balance of pedagogical approaches, practices and strategies

  • understand the learning intent of their play.

"Pretend play and the imagination are important for cognitive development, helping children to reflect upon and regulate their own cognitive behaviour".

To find out more read the Age-appropriate pedagogies for the early years of schooling: Foundation paper pdf version Adobe PDF document1.3M - word version. Microsoft® Word document 88K

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This page was last reviewed on 07 Oct 2016

Read the Teacher and child behaviours unpacked to focus on behaviours that may be observable in classroom practice. PDF version Adobe PDF document216K

Characteristics unpacked

Use the Questions to support teacher reflection to assist in embedding the characteristics of age-appropriate pedagogies into planning and practice. PDF version Adobe PDF document491K

Characteristics support teacher reflection

Use the Examples of practice to see how one teacher aligned curriculum, pedagogy and assessment in her Prep classroom.

Characteristics support teacher reflection

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