National Play Day 2014 – 6th July
Monday, July 7th, 2014
The aim of National Play Day is to help increase public awareness of the importance of play in supporting children’s physical and social development. The focus for National Play Day in 2014 is on ‘going out to play’ and a variety of projects have been funded that create opportunities for outdoor play at street, neighbourhood and community level. National Play Day provides the opportunity for Local Authorities to encourage children and their families to experience play in their own locality. (DCYA)
What Is Play?
There are several definitions of play, many of which are intrinsically linked to learning and development. The Siolta Quality Framework refers to play as being ‘central to the well-being, development and learning of the young child’ while the Aistear Curriculum Framework refers to play as the child’s ‘way of doing things’.
Early years and educational theorists have developed many philosophies surrounding the value and importance of play in childhood. Whilst theories can vary from one specialist to another, each carries the message that play, along with basic needs of nutrition, health, shelter & education is vital in developing the potential of all children.
The role of the adult is vital in promoting play opportunities for children as they require a high level of support for the purpose of their play, such as arranging play equipment or props, time and appropriate space to develop games and play. The development of the National Play Policy (2004) shares the vision of an ‘Ireland where the importance of play is recognized so that children experience a range of quality play opportunities to enrich their childhood’.
Giraffe childcare centres will celebrate National Play Day by hosting a variety of play events both indoors and outdoors at each centre location on Monday 7th July. A number of ‘Play Tips for Parents’ information sheets will also be available in each centre reception area. If you would like any further assistance in promoting play or perhaps some additional information on our play based Reach curriculum programme, please consult your Centre Manager who will only be too happy to discuss this with you.