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Best of All-Time Online Course

Exploring Play: The Importance of Play in Everyday Life

The University of Sheffield via FutureLearn

Overview

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This course from the School of Education at the University of Sheffield will encourage you to think differently about play.

We’ll discuss definitions of play and current debates about how the nature of play changes. Does play help us to learn? Can it prepare young people to be successful in the adult world? Are all forms of play good for us?

Play is a fundamental part of innovation and creativity across a whole range of subjects, careers, disciplines and industries, from fashion and engineering to teaching and business.

This course will be of interest to you if you wish to work or study in the fields of psychology, playwork, childhood studies, play therapy, hospital play, teaching, childcare, or if you just want to better understand your relationship with the children in your life and your own play.

Taught by

Elizabeth wood

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Reviews

4.9 rating, based on 114 reviews

Start your review of Exploring Play: The Importance of Play in Everyday Life

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    The Exploring Play course has been an eye-opening, thought-provoking and extremely informative course. As a teacher in a primary school but with experience and training in secondary education, I have found this extremely useful for my professional development....
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Really great course, easy to follow and topics broken down into bite-sized chunks. I have worked for many years in SEN, mostly with children with ASD, and currently in our Early Years provision. The course has made me re-think how children play and why...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I started on the course, not thinking that there were so many strands to play this course has made me realise that play is everywhere when you use your imagination! It was good to find out about the history of toys and the different material used in different...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    The course covers a broad range of topics and shows how play is integral to our personal development. It also shows how it is affected by factors such as urban design, access to facilities, the application of new technology, disability and the concept of universal design. The course presenters are experts in their fields and are able to convey complex ideas with clarity. This is a course which makes you think and challenges some of your pre-conceptions about play and its role in our lives and societies.
  • Easter Sippel

    Easter Sippel completed this course.

    I enjoyed, I wish I could do it a bit quicker and involved more to make comments. I found disturbing to promote technology as a good and helpful thing but I accept the explanation and changed my mind about it. I felt a bit sad about the final test, you can do it only if you upgrade. It's fine, I understand, end of the day is a business and a good try to make money. I am not blame you. Thank you for the opportunity, all the useful information and the extra reading suggestions. It was a pleasure to be part of this course.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    A really nicely put together course, which provides a lot of thoughtful content on what 'play' is. It took me in directions that I wasn't expecting and opened my eyes to new ways of looking at types of play and the different merits of it. Some of the units appealed to me less than others, but they all had interesting elements to them and this was a fun seven weeks of learning!
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Very informative and easy to follow. Well presented and taught by people who have a passion for the subject. I thoroughly enjoyed it and learned a lot. Thank you.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Really great course, easy to follow and topics broken down into bite-sized chunks. I have worked for many years in SEN, mostly with children with ASD, and currently in our Early Years provision. The course has made me re-think how children play and why...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I found this course very interesting and informative. It gives a deeper understanding of value of play in children and young adults life. It give a background about what is play , how it evolved, what are its benefits on the healthy growth of children....
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Kudos to the curriculum designers, instructors, researchers, academicians and volunteers for structuring and offering this comprehensive course on the nuances of 'play' - its origin, theories, forms, types, scope, etc. It broadened my perspective on the...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Really enjoyed this Play course. It was interesting and I feel I will take alot of new ideas with me. The videos where knowledgeable and the team where a great help. I feel I learned new aspects relating to play and will be putting these new activities...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    The course was wide ranging in research and very relevant. I particularly enjoyed and learned a great deal from the section on disability and play. The audio/video sections were very well presented and were not overwelming or onourous in length given...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    This course is really well put together, with engaging videos, informative articles and helpful discussion. I choose not to pay a subscription so it was completely free, although I don't get a certificate at the end. The course covers a wide variety of...
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I highly recommend! This course has helped me to see the complex nature of play and how it is not confined to childhood - and to become more playful myself. It explores a wide range of play types, barriers and theories through various articles, videos and discussions. It is evident a lot of thought and hard work has gone into making topics relevant and engaging. :)

    I would say it took me longer than the advertised 3 hours per week but you have to the freedom to interact with it as you choose. This was my first foray into an online course and has helped me gain confidence; I never contributed in uni tutorials but have loved joining in with discussions and expressing myself through writing.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I found the course to be interesting and has ignited my enthusiasm for learning, in particular in areas that I would not have thought; language and communication. There was a different topic each week and this helped attain my attention and for it not to wain. I was a little disappointed with not being able to take the assessment at the end without upgrading as I would have been interested in seeing how well (or not?) I would have done, but can understand why this is the case. The course has been like a little taster into further studies and as such has been successful, as it has made me want to ask more questions on certain topics and learn more. Thank you.
  • Joyce Henderson

    Joyce Henderson completed this course.

    The course has been very engaging for the last seven weeks, taking the subject of play in many different directions. It's been enjoyable, thought provoking and you can participate at many levels, from writing a sentence to writing an essay, from watching a 5 minute film, to full on study with a reference library. It's suitable for so many different walks of life and a pleasure to learn about one subject that crosses many walks of life.
    Just saying again I'd like there to have been more study on gender and play and adults and play. But perhaps the course is encouraging me to look at those two points in more detail elsewhere.
    Thank you for running this course.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I really enjoyed this course and it really gave me a detailed insight of what play is all about and how complex it is..... I really found the outdoor play part very engaging and so true in the fact that children playing outdoors in a natural environment really opens their senses and gives them an opportunity to be in tune with nature....being a forest school leader myself and working with young children I know how important this is....

    Very interesting also the section on virtual play and technology....loved play in the different decades and brought back lots of memories!!!
    Well done very enjoyable and have recommended to my colleagues.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I thoroughly have enjoyed taking part in this course, and have learnt more about this important topic. when I first started week 1, I did not expect to be fully engrossed and become more and more curious with this topic especially as my first response was very limited when asked for my definition of play. Now I probably still cannot give an exact definition of PLAY, as it is such a complex subject but I definitely understand more about the importance of play and not only for young children. For me, virtual play and disabilities and play were the most intriguing. Thank you for such a great course.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Each week of the course took me in a completely different way of thinking. I was amazed at some of the things that I had learnt from doing this course. There was some things I was aware of but never taught much about it until this course went in-depth about it. There was some things I never taught as being play and within this course it talks about how it actually is a type of play. I highly recommend doing this course. It opened my mind a lot and I feel as though I have gained a better understanding of what I should be watching for or doing with my children to promote their play and learn better.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I hadn't heard about the course at the beginning, but was requested to do it by my employers due to lockdown. At the beginning I was not too keen as I have done alot of online courses at the moment. However, I was pleasantly surprised. I found it informative, interesting and there was lots to learn. I particularly liked the format of the course, in that there were videos, reading, links, quizzes and discussion that made it accessible for all. There were certain units that I enjoyed more than others but I am sure there is something for everyone.
    Thank you in putting this together

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