Autonomy, proactivity, ability to solve problems, creativity, teamwork, empathy. The entrepreneurial attitude comprises the domain of competences that, by being subjective, end up not having as much emphasis in the school curriculum as they should. One way to help your students develop them is … leaving them free to play.
Playing helps children express themselves without judging what is right or wrong or what is socially acceptable. It also helps developing self-esteem and empathy for others. Fantasy and make-believe situations, for example, work the ability to improvise and solve problems in a creative way. In addition, these games allows children to experience different social roles, with no boundaries but their own imagination.
One of educators greatest challenge is not letting playtime be restricted to young children, but an important aspect of all levels of education, instead. So use your imagination: invite your students to sit on the floor, propose games based on classes content, create role-plays, and reverse the roles in the classroom. Break the routine with free activities and you will see that the result can be surprising and learning, easier.
Want to know more about the impact of playing on students’ development? The Brazilian documentary Drops of Joy is a great way to dive into the theme. The film talks about the importance of playing for human development from the perspective of educators, psychologists, artists and other experts in the subject. The link is available in the CER Library, which offers extra content on the topics covered here.