The first trial of the Imagination Games will happen in the schools of the Murchison region in Western Australia.
A Spielgaben toy to keep will be delivered to each participating school over the first three weeks of term at a time to suit each school. Occupational Therapists Jo and Barb will spend time with each participating class scaffolding imaginative play alongside class teachers.
On receipt of their Spielgaben toy each school has three weeks (so key dates will vary) to create a 5-minute piece of film which shows adult scaffolding of group imaginative play and may also showcase:
· Any changes noted to children’s self-regulation skills in that time, for example, changes to play themes, children’s willingness to contribute to tidying, tasks in the classroom, attentiveness in mat time.
· Alterations to play themes over those weeks, for example, less violence.
· Community involvement (eg. children visiting a work place and then playing a game about what was learned or involvement of stay and play children and parents in imaginative play).
· Ties to planned curriculum (please see list of relevant content descriptors).
Teachers may like to look through the provided links for examples of the kind of interactions they may like to showcase.
To determine the winners the 5-minute videos from each school will be submitted to an independent panel of judges from an educational background. The entries will be ranked by the judges on:
Firstly, how well they show adult scaffolding of play eg. Showing the adult moving the play to positive themes, involving children in problem and solution discussions.
Judges will then rank top entries against the following criteria in the order listed:
Demonstration of improving self-regulation in children.
Movement to positive and non-violent play themes.
Ties to planned curriculum.
More information about the judges will be shared in the next month.
A cash prize to go to the winning school for the teacher (in consultation with the principal) to decide how it can best be used to further support imaginative play in that classroom.
Key dates will vary due to staggered start times for each school.