Play-based learning has long been a means of facilitating teaching and learning in the early childhood years. The Walker Learning Approach, an Australian-designed, evidence-based play pedagogy, provides a solid base and foundation for intentional and responsive teaching in the early years. The program's systems and practices support teams of early childhood educators in a consistent approach that ensures continuity and predictability for children, educators and families.
Early Childhood Play Matters provides guidance and many practical ideas on implementing the Walker Learning Approach within early childhood learning practices.
It also includes organisational ideas and resources, a full-colour section of photographs, templates for planning, assessment and reporting activities, and a bibliography for further reference.
Early Childhood Play Matters concentrates on the most formative years of education (birth to six years of age), with intentional, rich and rigorous play-based opportunities for young children. It builds upon the successful work that Shona Bass and Kathy Walker have achieved in play-based curriculum in the early and primary years nationally and internationally.
Early Childhood Play Matters Resources
Shona Bass, Managing Director, Early Life Foundations
Shona is renowned both within Australia and internationally for her work in the education, medical and health sectors. Shona completed her PhD in the Department of Medicine at the University of Melbourne and was a Professor and Head of School at Deakin University. She has published widely in international peer-reviewed journals and texts and has been the recipient of many national and international research awards. Shona is the co-author of Engagement Matters – Personalised Learning for Grades 3 to 6, and the DVD Creating an Engaging and Intentional Learning Environment.
Shona is a well-known speaker internationally and nationally, and works with a variety of professions on an extensive range of topics related to leadership, team building and developing relationships. She conducts a range of professional development sessions for educators working across all sectors of early childhood and primary education, as well as for parents and government organisations.
Kathy Walker, Founding Director, Early Life Foundations
Kathy Walker is one of Australia’s leading parenting and education experts, public speakers and authors. In 2012 and 2014 she was nominated for the Australian of the Year award, and in 2014 was awarded an Order of Australia (OAM). She is the Founding Director of Early Life Foundations, a leading parenting and education consultancy. Her expertise in parenting and early childhood education spans 30 years.
Kathy is a leading author with Penguin Publishing and the Australian Council for Educational Research. Her texts for parents include Ready, Set, Go?, What’s the Hurry?, Parenting and her most recent book Future Proofing Your Child. Kathy’s texts for educators include Play Matters – Investigative Learning for Preschool to Grade 2 and Engagement Matters – Personalised Learning for Grades 3 to 6.
Kathy is one of the country’s leading curriculum and teaching and learning experts in personalised learning. She is the designer of the Walker Learning Approach, a major personalised learning pedagogy (preschool to Year 8) that is implemented in Australia and internationally.