Learning through play is a pedagogical approach where play is the valued mode of learning.  Children have the opportunity to explore, experiment, discover and solve problems in imaginative and creative ways. 

An effective learning through play programme enables children to engage in self directed play where the teacher observes, discusses and extends the children’s learning when appropriate. 

We run a Learning Through Play approach in our Year 0-2 classes.

Learning Through Play at

St Peter Chanel School


The Why ?


  • New Entrant children settle into school quickly because of improved continuity between school and early childhood education.

  • Play based learning often requires interaction with others and this gives children opportunity to practice language skills, negotiation, cooperation, empathy, active listening and compromise. 

  • Play contributes to a child’s sense of wellbeing and can support self management skills.   

  • Children learn from each other and discussions often raise great questions for further investigations.

  • Play based activities enable children to follow their interests and engage in problem solving, innovation and creativity.

  • Play based learning enables teachers to observe children and teach small Literacy and Numeracy groups.  

  •  Values and key competencies in the New Zealand Curriculum can be taught and effectively practiced in a play based learning environment.  

  •  Most importantly children are having fun while being engaged in their learning.