Lower School | K-Gr. 5

What does "I Played" Really Mean in the Early Childhood Classroom?

Severn Education Series (summer 2017); written by Lower School Head Cathy North and Director of Instructional Programs Sherri Hoyt
In the summer edition of our Education Series, Lower School Head Ms. Cathy North and Director of Instructional Programs Ms. Sherri Hoyt discuss the role and value of play in the early childhood classroom. Children often say "I played" to describe their day in the classroom, but there is a much deeper purpose behind every playful activity and lesson. Cathy and Sherri dive into the spectrum of skills development represented by that simple phrase, "I played."

An Essential Time for Guided Growth

Cathy and Sherri write:

"During the early childhood years, a child’s brain develops faster than any other point in their lives. They develop cognitive skills, foundational social skills, a sense of self-esteem, awareness of the world and an early moral framework. 

An early childhood classroom should look, sound, and feel different from an elementary classroom because children at this age engage in more complex play. When children say “I played” they may really be saying:
  • I learned how to work on a team!
  • I was a mathematician! I learned about size, shape, length, weight, balance and spatial relationships of objects.
  • I was an engineer! I exercised my problem-solving and fine-motor skills to design and build a model train to move blocks from one place to another.
  • and so much more
Robust early experiences will set the stage for success through your child’s academic years and beyond."

Children in the early childhood classroom learning patterns by clapping.
Hand clapping is a fun way for young children to learn patterns and begin number sense development.

Read the full article here:

Learn More About Severn's Educational Philosophy

Interested in learning more about our educational philosophy at Severn? Explore our Education Series page for articles on:

  • Best Practices for a Middle School Education
  • How to get the most out of the high school experience
  • Helping students find the right college
  • What it means to be known and valued in Severn Middle School
  • How the Maker Mindset drives our Lower School curriculum

Please share!

    • Lower School Head Cathy North engages with Severn kindergarten students.

Lower School

Preschool-Grade 5
Chesapeake Campus
1185 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd
Arnold, MD 21012

Middle/Upper School

Grade 6-12
Teel Campus
Severna Park, MD 21146