Pedagogical positioning in play - teachers being inside and outside of children's imaginary play

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

44 Citations (Scopus)


Although there is a long tradition of play pedagogy in early childhood education, teachers have mostly taken a passive role in children s play. There are relatively few studies of the pedagogical roles adults take from inside of children s imaginary play. This paper seeks to fill this gap through presenting the findings of a study where the play pedagogy of five Australian childcare centres was analysed. Video observations of nine teachers interacting with children (3.3-5.5 years) during free play time (399 h of video observations) were analysed using the concept of subject positioning. It was found most teachers positioning themselves outside of children s play. A typology of play is presented which includes teacher proximity to children s play; teacher intent is in parallel with children s intent; teacher is following the children s play; teacher is engaged in sustained collective play; and teacher is inside the children s imaginary play.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1801 - 1814
Number of pages14
JournalEarly Child Development and Care
Issue number11-12
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Cite this