Invitation: Spatiality as a Construct for Early Childhood Play

24/7 Homework Help

Stuck on a homework question? Our verified tutors can answer all questions, from basic math to advanced rocket science!

This week, you are invited to contemplate how spatial theory helps us make sense of the play lives of children and the reciprocal relationships between space and play. Here are some questions you may wish to mull over as you read:

  • What parts of the reading do you find useful for your own thinking? What parts spur disconnection?
  • What new understandings about play & space did you encounter?
  • What questions do the readings bring up for you?

Part 1: Historical Groundings

Everyone will read:

Part 2: Theoretical Groundings

Everyone will read:

  • Chapter 1 from Massey’s For Space
  • Horton, J. & Kraftl, P. (2006). What else? Some more ways of thinking and doing ‘children’s geographies’. Children’s Geographies, 4(1), 69-95.

Part 3: Viewing

Everyone will watch:

Part 4: Theories in Use

Everyone reads to the top of page 11 ONLY:

  • Bolling, S & Millei, Z. (2018). Spaces of early childhood: Spatial approaches to research in early childhood education and care. Journal of Pedagogy.

Choose TWO (2) from the following:

  • Cowan, K. (2020). Tracing the ephemeral: Mapping running games. Designs for Learning, 2(1), 81-93. 
  • Jones, S, Thiel, J. J., Davila, D., et. al. (2016). Childhood geographies and spatial justice: Making sense of place and space-making as politics acts in education. American Educational Research Journal.
  • Lyttleton-Smith, J. (2017). Objects of conflict: (re) configuring early childhood experiences of gender in the preschool classroom. Gender and Education. DOI: 10.1080/09540253.2017.1332343              

OPTIONAL-Part 5: Other ways of thinking about space in play research

Choose ONE (1) from the following:

  • Sherfinski, M. & Slocum, A. (2018). Playing the festival queen in Appalachia: influences of local culture on classroom play. Journal of Research in Early Childhood, 32(4), 455-471. 
  • Burke, C. (2005). “Play in focus”: Children researching their own spaces and places for play. Children, Youth, and Environments, 15(1), 27-53.

Part 6: Try-it-out 1 Exploring the Spatial and Play

Spatial Analysis

This week, you will analyze spatial happenings. For this try-it-out, you will:

  • Watch all three of the following videos:

             VIDEO 1: AnjiPlay:

             VIDEO 2: Outside Time for Quite Play:

             VIDEO 3: Discovering Making Music:

  • Choose one of the videos to analyze by engaging in the following questions:
What are the bodies doing?
Where are the bodies?
How are the bodies interacting with one another?
How are the bodies interacting with material objects?
What are the material objects?
Where are the material objects?
What do the material objects do?
What spaces are used for learning? How are spaces organized?

What does the space do?
What are the people saying to one another?
What kind of language is being used?
How are the people interacting with one another through language?
Where else do you see the language that is valued?
How is the language connected to the material objects and space? How are spatial theories helping you make sense of the videos?  

Part 7: Try-it-out 2 Exploring the Spatial and Play

For part 3, you will create a playspace by building a fort in your home. You can use any materials you have available (sheets, blankets, boxes, twinkle lights, etc.) be creative. There are only a few rules:

             1. Make a fort.

            2. Get in the fort and spend at least 20 minutes inside. If you live with             others, invite them to create and get in the fort with you.

            3. Do whatever you want when you are inside the fort.

Using digital photos, document your process of making the fort, how the fort looks outside and inside, and what you did in the fort. Using this week’s readings, craft a photo essay analyzing your fort. (Use Hofsess et. al.’s work as an example of a photo essay.)

Resources for further study—NOT required:

Hire a competent writer to help you with

Invitation: Spatiality as a Construct for Early Childhood Play

troublesome homework