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Children's Play
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Children's Play



September 2004 | 296 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc

"Wonderful edition to a foundations course; much needed focus on the natural way children learn through play!"

                                                                                   —Diane Lang, Manhattanville College

"This is the most clearly self aware of the several current works in the psychology of children's play. It has the unique worth of being unusually comprehensive with respect to play stages, gender differences, private lives, neighborhoods, humor, collections, video games, responses to stress and the uses of recess and play therapy. I particularly liked the demonstration of the continuing role of make believe from early childhood on into the theatric, literary, and electronic foci of adolescence. These four authors are to be congratulated for having brought us as students and as parents an unusually readable text."

-Brian Sutton-Smith, Prof. Emeritus, University of Pennsylvania

"The authors' treatment of play is both original and provocative. Unlike most previous expositions on play, they consider not only the social and cognitive dimensions of play but also its aesthetic nature. The treatment of youth sport was especially impressive. This is a 'must read' for students of play."

-Anthony D. Pellegrini, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities

"Children's Play combines uncompromising scholarship with fresh, joyful prose. By looking at both the structure and content of play the authors help us understand the developmental significance of this complex way of being in the world. Each chapter contains exactly the topics we want to study and adds surprises that counter the folk-psychology of today. Children's Play does more than overview the research literature; it engenders new thinking."

-George E. Forman, Ph.D., University of Massachusetts, Amherst

Play is a fundamental value for children-it is complex, beautiful, and important for children's development. Play is about having fun, being outdoors, being with friends, choosing freely, pretending, enacting fantasy, and playing games. It is about enjoying the moment, and consequently, not about planning for or worrying about the future.

Play is a surprisingly complex and significant phenomenon in the lives of children everywhere. Children's Play looks at the many facets of play and how it develops from infancy through late childhood. Authors W. George Scarlett, Sophie Naudeau, Dorothy Salonius-Pasternak, and Iris Ponte take a broad approach to examining how children play by including a wide variety of types of play, play settings, and play media. The book also discusses major revolutions in the way today's children play, including changes in organized youth sports, children's humor, and electronic play. Children's Play addresses diversity throughout the text and explores play on the topics of gender, disabilities, socioeconomic class, and culture.

Key Features

  • Examines how play is used for purposes other than leisure, including academic learning and reducing stress in environments such as hospitals and refugee camps
  • Integrates culture throughout to give readers a true understanding of how culture shapes children's play
  • Provides rich illustration of figures and photos to portray children in various play settings
  • Includes pedagogical aids such as chapter-opening outlines, boxed material to highlight key points, real-life examples, and a summary section with key words, names, and ideas for working with children

Children's Play is an excellent textbook for advanced undergraduate courses on child behavior in the areas of Psychology, Human Development and Family Studies, Education, Early Childhood Education, and Educational Psychology. It is also a useful resource for professionals already working with children including preschool, elementary, and junior high school teachers, daycare workers, and related fields.

is an excellent textbook for advanced undergraduate courses on child behavior in the areas of Psychology, Human Development and Family Studies, Education, Early Childhood Education, and Educational Psychology. It is also a useful resource for professionals already working with children including preschool, elementary, and junior high school teachers, daycare workers, and related fields.

 
Preface
 
1. Introduction
 
PART I: THE DEVELOPMENT OF PLAY FROM INFANCY THROUGH LATE CHILDHOOD
 
2. The Emergence of Play in Infancy and the Toddler Years
 
3. Play in Early Childhood: The Golden Age of Make-Believe
 
4. Play in Late Childhood: Rule-Governed Play
 
5. Children's Humor
 
PART II: REVOLUTIONS IN CHILDREN'S PLAY
 
6. Electronic Play: Computer, Console, and Video Games
 
7. Organized Youth Sports
 
PART III: MAJOR SETTINGS FOR CHILDREN'S PLAY
 
8. Home and Outdoor Play
 
9. Schooling and Play
 
PART IV: THERAPEUTIC USES OF PLAY
 
10. Restorative Play in Stressful Environments
 
11. Play Therapy
 
Web Resources
 
References


"This is the most clearly self aware of the several current works in the psychology of children's play. It has the unique worth of being unusually comprehensive with respect to play stages, gender differences, private lives, neighborhoods, humor, collections, video games, responses to stress and the uses of recess and play therapy. I particularly liked the demonstration of the continuing role of make believe from early childhood on into the theatric, literary, and electronic foci of adolescence. These four authors are to be congratulated for having brought us as students and as parents an unusually readable text."

Brian Sutton-Smith
Prof. Emeritus, University of Pennsylvania


"The authors' treatment of play is both original and provocative. Unlike most previous expositions on play, they consider not only the social and cognitive dimensions of play but also its aesthetic nature. The treatment of youth sport was especially impressive. This is a 'must read' for students of play."

Anthony D. Pellegrini
University of Minnesota, Twin Cities


"Children's Play combines uncompromising scholarship with fresh, joyful prose. By looking at both the structure and content of play the authors help us understand the developmental significance of this complex way of being in the world. Each chapter contains exactly the topics we want to study and adds surprises that counter the folk-psychology of today. Children's Play does more than overview the research literature; it engenders new thinking."

George E. Forman, Ph.D.
University of Massachusetts, Amherst


"Enlivened with illustrations and case studies, this book gives an exceptionally readable account of the development of children’s play from infancy through to adolescence. It also branches out to include humor, sports, and modern developments in electronic games, as well as uses of play in therapy. It will be a great resource for practitioners and play workers, and indeed for parents who wish to be informed of current thinking and research."

Peter K. Smith
Goldsmiths College, U.K.

"Readers who are parents and students interested in examining and learning about the complexities of children's play will find this book wonderfully educational. The vocabulary and language used in this book is clear and easily understandable to those reading at the college level. The authors' optimistic and energetic description of children's play makes reading this book effortless. The information in this book leads its readers to a provocative examination of their own play experiences and those of the children around them. Readers will feel stimulated and tempted to engage in further exploration in this fascinating area of study by the content and concepts presented in this splendid book."

Steve Ta-Shen Yang
Springer

Did not like the structure of the book and the way the authors convey the material (almost in apologizing manner).
I rather have each theory separately.

Professor Hadas Mizrahi
child development, Union Institute & University
May 19, 2014
Key features
  • Broad scope. Covers various age groups from infancy through pre-adolescence and includes topics often missing from books on children's play, e.g., restorative play.
  • Discussion of current revolutions in play. Provides full coverage of topics such as electronic play and organized youth sports.
  • Treatment of culture. Rather than segregate culture into a single chapter, culture and diversity issues run throughout the book to give students a deep understanding of how pervasively culture shapes children's play. Discussions include considerations of age changes in how children play, gender differences, socioeconomic class differences, differences based on disabilities, cultural differences, and typical versus atypical settings and environments.
  • Helpful pedaogy.  To assist student study, chapters include chapter-opening outlines, boxed material to amplify key points with memorable real-life examples, a socratic style that punctuates the text by posing new topics in the form of questions to be explored, a summary section along with a list of key words, names, and ideas, and a rich illustration program with figures and photos of children in various play settings.

For instructors

Review and Desk copies for this title are available digitally via VitalSource.

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