Assignment 3: Play and environment folio
Word limit: 2000 (+/- 10%)
This assessment task will allow you to integrate your knowledge about play and environment from across the unit, and to put theory into practice, by developing a folio that incorporates design plans for two learning environments that invite engagement, active learning and constructive play.
You will need to collate a range of sources that have inspired you in your designs, and to analyse their aesthetic and creative features and how they would help to support children’s play.
Related learning outcomes
This task is assessing your ability to demonstrate that you meet the criteria for the following unit learning outcomes:
4. assess key aspects and features of play environments that support learning for children aged 0-8 years of age
5. analyse aesthetic and creative features of environments that invite engagement, active learning and constructive play
6. analyse the role of nature, natural materials and outdoor play spaces in children’s play.
You will create and design plans for two learning environments. Your plans may focus on an entire place or a specific area within a place, for example you might design a book corner, a sensory play area or a vegetable garden. Plans should be based on the following requirements:
• One plan for an indoor environment and one for an outdoor environment.
• One plan for a learning environment for children at a pre-school (0-5 years old) and one for children at a primary school (5-8 years old). You may further define a specific age group within the indicated age range, for example you may design specifically for infants and toddlers, and that counts as one for children in an early childhood centre.
You could design an indoor environment for pre-school and an outdoor environment for early primary, or an outdoor environment for pre-school and an indoor environment for early primary. As long as both requirements are met, it doesn’t matter how they are mapped.
Each of your plans must incorporate:
• a floor plan (you may attach sketches or images to illustrate the resources, settings or effects)
• an overview/description of the planned environment
• a brief summary of key features of the space, including targeted age group and type of environment (indoor/outdoor).
Imagine that you are going to present your plans to your peers – your teaching team. The plans should include sufficient details in the following report section describing the space in further detail including:
• clear objectives of your plans and how these will be supported by specific features of your design
• aesthetic and creative features of your environment that invites engagement, active learning and constructive play
• the role of nature and natural materials
• the diverse interests and abilities of the children in mind, ensuring inclusive practice
• references to research literature, the EYLF and other professional support resources that describe the benefits of the types of play your design is intended to support
• references – in APA format.
Ensure you demonstrate your understanding of keywords such as key aspects and features, aesthetics, creative, engagement, active learning, and constructive as well as how you plan the environments around these keywords.
Preparing your folio items
You will prepare your folio as a Word document. Make sure that both of your learning environments are clearly marked and differentiated within this document (i.e. each should begin on a new page with a clear title).
The learning material in the third theme for this unit (Weeks 8-11) has been specifically designed to support you as you prepare the learning environments for your folio:
Week 8: Key aspects and features of the play environment – introduces the key features of the learning environment.
Week 9: Aesthetic and creative features of the play environment – will help you to address the requirement that you describe the aesthetic and creative features of your environments.
Week 10: Nature, natural materials and outdoor play spaces – will help you to address the requirement that you need to incorporate nature and natural materials into your environments.
Week 11: Resources and materials – will help you put the finishing touches to your environments by looking at how you can incorporate resources and materials.
Incorporating visual material into your folio items
Note that, as described above, you are required to include visual material (e.g. floor plans, photos or drawings of specific resources). You can either create these using electronic drawing tools or you can simply draw them on paper and then digitise them e.g. by scanning or photographing any drawings you create.
Once your visual resources have been converted to a digital format, they can be inserted into your Word document. You can also consider changing your Word document to a PDF this will ensure formatting does not move.
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