This video sequence showcases children doing an art activity with paint and marbles. Each child has 1 marble and 4 color paint containers with a wooden spoon. The child is supposed to dip the marble in a color using a wooden spoon then swirl the marble on the paint tray lined with paper to create a color pattern. . Then the child can opt to dip the marble in another color and do the same until she forms her own paint design. . The key worker supervises, prompting the children on what to do, supporting their actions with praises and reminding them of the concept of colors (The Open University, 2009 DVD).
“A modern view of the child acknowledges agency, that is, children’s capacity to understand and act upon their world. It acknowledges that children demonstrate extraordinary competence from birth” (Walker, 2009, p. 98). Even as smaller and more inexperienced individuals, children are endowed with a lot of potentials and skills. With a supportive environment, such may be honed to enable the child to do more – participate and contribute to society. As children, they find expression of their ideas in play. In doing so, they also get to practice skills they would need as they grow to be the individuals they were meant to be.
Play is an inherent right of the child. It says so under Article 31 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989) which endorses children’s right to engage in play (Open University, 2009). This is so because experts are aware of play’s benefits that foster children’s learning. Play is an avenue where one can be free to be oneself without anyone imposing rules or restrictions to conform to society’s standards.
According to Nutbrown (1999), the first introductions of play for most children are in a ‘home-based pedagogy of play’. This is so true in my own work setting. It is believed that such pedagogy enables young children to begin the process of early learning (Open University, 2009).