Gaining a cognitive understanding of social systems through play serves to provide many practical experiences which enhance learning, including developing an understanding of social rules, social expectations and logical thinking.
- Previous research on older children (Reed and Brown, 2000; Pellegrini and Smith, 1998) highlighted the social connections demonstrated between rough-and-tumble play partners.
- Daycare centres chosen over preschools and early childhood programs due to the amount of time and consistency that children are exposed to each other
- 10x90 minute observations were made of daily activities of the participants in their daily settings at a variety of different times and days.
- Noticed that rough and tumble player was more frequent during free play sessions.
Criteria for inclusion of rough and tumble play
o Play fighting
o Open-handed slaps
The observations for this study encompassed the following typical daily routines:
- The criteria in distinguishing these types of behaviours as play and not aggression involved the display of the cheerful play face.
- Play face = children smiling and laughing
- Free play experiences are those in which children at play have the opportunity to make choices in determining their activity.
- Due to there being no universal definition of rough and tumble play, categorising and observing it can be difficult
- Using the descriptors from previous research was only a starting point.
- Some are general and require observers to be aware of individual components
- For this reason separate observation sheets were used for each incident of rough and tumble play observed.
- They detailed date, time and place.
- Children’s comments made during the play were also included
- Behaviours and comments were reviewed by three trained observers at each site, two of whom were classroom teachers of participating children and the third was the researcher.
Gender and rough and tumble play
Based on the data collected, the girls displayed fewer rough and tumble behaviours than the boys.
the boys engaged in every rough and tumble play according to the finding with the table.
One of the researchers whom Harris draws on in her peer discussion is William A. Corsaro, a professor of sociology at Indiana University and a pioneer in the ethnography of early childhood. He was one of the first researchers to spend months crouching by swing sets and next to monkey bars closely observing the speech and play patterns of preschoolers. In one of his many playground stakeouts, Corsaro was sitting next to a sandbox and watching two four-year-old girls, Jenny and Betty, play house, and put sand in pots, cupcake pans, and teapots. Suddenly, a third girl, Debbie, approached. Here is Corsaro’s full description of the scene:
Observe a child interact with their parent/ caretaker for 2 hours (do not interfere) Record developmental age, psychological and cognitive level, parenting style, motor skills
Visit a park or public area and observe a child a child at play for 2 hours. Do not interfere with the subject, just observe.
Gross Motor Skills
Please describe whether the subject is at/above/beyond their development skills, etc.