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Ms. Turner’s Classroom Edit display name

  • Federal McKeesport Central I - Head Start
  • McKeesport, PA
  • More than three‑quarters of students from low‑income households

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Dramatic play, (also known as symbolic play,) is a necessary component of early childhood education. Opportunities to engage in this type of play helps foster children's social-emotional development, while also: supporting language development; and making math and literacy experiences more meaningful, increasing the likelihood of academic success. Dramatic play gives children the opportunity to assign and accept roles as they plan and coordinate different scenarios. It is a self-directed activity during which children are able to establish their own expectations for these roles. The ability to set and follow expectations aids in children’s development of self-regulation. Teachers provide a "safe place" to act out real-life situations while utilizing teachable moments to model positive conflict resolution skills. Imaginative play also aids in language development. Assigning and fulfilling roles within a group involves an extensive amount of communicating with peers. Reenacting familiar roles, and developing fantasy ones encourages the use of expressive communication. Teachers can further foster language development during these interactions by engaging in some scenarios with students, and asking open ended questions requiring dialogue. When children are interested in subject matter being taught, they are more likely to show progress. Dramatic play makes topics like literacy and math more relatable. It allows children to explore different purposes for text. Providing a dramatic play area with props and functional text (restaurant menus, maps, signs…) gives children the opportunity to interact with text the way adults do, essentially teaching them in meaningful ways how it's used in real life. Symbolic play also fosters children’s math development. By setting up a grocery store or restaurant theme, math can be embedded into dramatic play as they pretend to weigh produce and count money. Teachers can make these experiences more meaningful by modeling how we use math in real life scenarios initiated by children.

About my class

Dramatic play, (also known as symbolic play,) is a necessary component of early childhood education. Opportunities to engage in this type of play helps foster children's social-emotional development, while also: supporting language development; and making math and literacy experiences more meaningful, increasing the likelihood of academic success. Dramatic play gives children the opportunity to assign and accept roles as they plan and coordinate different scenarios. It is a self-directed activity during which children are able to establish their own expectations for these roles. The ability to set and follow expectations aids in children’s development of self-regulation. Teachers provide a "safe place" to act out real-life situations while utilizing teachable moments to model positive conflict resolution skills. Imaginative play also aids in language development. Assigning and fulfilling roles within a group involves an extensive amount of communicating with peers. Reenacting familiar roles, and developing fantasy ones encourages the use of expressive communication. Teachers can further foster language development during these interactions by engaging in some scenarios with students, and asking open ended questions requiring dialogue. When children are interested in subject matter being taught, they are more likely to show progress. Dramatic play makes topics like literacy and math more relatable. It allows children to explore different purposes for text. Providing a dramatic play area with props and functional text (restaurant menus, maps, signs…) gives children the opportunity to interact with text the way adults do, essentially teaching them in meaningful ways how it's used in real life. Symbolic play also fosters children’s math development. By setting up a grocery store or restaurant theme, math can be embedded into dramatic play as they pretend to weigh produce and count money. Teachers can make these experiences more meaningful by modeling how we use math in real life scenarios initiated by children.

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