The child chosen for this observation assignment was Johnnie (not real name). Johnnie is four years old and is male by gender. The observation was conducted on 18 September 2014. It is worth noting that Johnnie attends Joy Child Kindergarten where children are given opportunities for everything. Joy Child Kindergarten gives children opportunities to engage in free play and interact with each other effectively. The aim of the objective was to establish Johnnie’s social-cognitive play patterns while at the kindergarten.
The best thing is that teachers are Joy Child Kindergarten give every child the opportunity to play without any form of interaction and interference in the activities of play. With these, it is easy for any observer to understand the nature of each child and give helpful recommendations to boost their social-cognitive play patterns.
This paper highlights the results of the Parten/Piaget assessments relating to Johnnie’s social-cognitive play patterns. More so, the paper presents suggestions for Johnnie’s interactions and curriculum.
A keen observation of Johnnie revealed that he enjoyed running and jumping around. He found pleasure in jumping and running from one place of the playing field to another. His behavior was consistent throughout the process of observation.
The observation also revealed that Johnnie liked pouring water from one container to another anytime he could manage reach it. He was determined to fill several cans using water from the bucket. Interestingly, he lifted a jug full of water from the bucket and filled each small can several times.
Role-playing was also conspicuous during the observation exercise. When playing with a doll, Johnnie could try to pamper it the same way a parent does to a child. He seemed to feel sorry each time the doll fell on the floor. He picked it up immediately and carried it high trying to calm it down in the same manner a parent does to a crying child.
Johnnie was reluctant to follow the rules of the ball bouncing game when playing with other children. He engaged in a game to bounce the ball against the wall. The key rule of the game was that everyone’s turn would expire when one misses to hit the ball against the wall. Nevertheless, Johnnie did not yield to these rules every time he missed hitting the wall.
In most instances, Johnnie seemed to play on his own away from other children. He kept an estimated distance of about three feet while playing on his own. His teacher clarified that the habit has been going on for a while. He enjoys playing alone using different toys from those used by other children at the kindergarten. During the observation, Johnnie was mainly centered on his activities and seemed to pay little attention to what others were doing. This was a key indicator of Johnnie’s sense of low level of socialization with other children at the Joy Children Kindergarten.
In line with the observation, Johnnie wandered from one place to another and seemed less interested in the ongoing activities. This happened after he had completed most of his play. He was free and took wandered around the place without looking around at what other students were doing on the field. His relaxation emanated from continuous movements around the field.
In the course of the observations, Johnnie was fond of coloring his books. He could take marker pens of different colors from his bag and color his books. He smiled every moment he colored his books. Apart from coloring his books, he doodled and showed off his work to the teacher and other students in class. This is an indication of his pride and enjoyment of the book coloring exercise.
Looking at the observations, Johnnie does not like playing with others. He prefers solitary play to the group play, which could be vital for the growth of his social abilities. The most significant suggestion to improve his interactions with others is to introduce junior tournaments at the kindergarten. Joy Child Kindergarten could introduce tournaments covering different games such as soccer in which all children can take part. Charlesworth agrees that this will give Johnnie the easiest chance of understanding the significance of playing with other children. In fact, he should be put in a team that is ready to cooperate with him and change his attitude toward other children. Such tournaments are likely to improve his morale and ensure that he is playing at the best possible level while studying at the kindergarten. His performance in non-play activities will automatically improve with the attitude of working with others.
The second significant suggestion relates to the observation of rules when playing with rules. As noted from the observation, Johnnie does not like following the rules of any given game he takes part. He is always confronting his friends and does not like following the required rules of the game. According to Johnson, Christie and Wardle, this negates his relationship with other children because they feel he does not respect their position and opinion on the nature of play. Nevertheless, teachers could help Johnnie to understand the essence of rules in any given game. The curriculum should be constructed in a manner that gives children the ability to be taught the importance of following established rules. It is crucial to understand that these children will grow up in a society full of rules that have to be observed on a daily basis. Teaching Johnnie and other children these rules in a class situation will give him some form of responsibility and he will improve. Tests should also be conducted by observing any changes in behavior when playing games with rules. Overall, Johnnie could improve his ability to follow rules in cases where his teachers are serious about the subject and the need for him to understand it.
More so, it is suggested that the curriculum be made up of sessions involving the handling of different toys and their usage for personal entertainment. The teacher could provide colored toys on a regular basis. The random selection of such toys will give children such as Johnnie the ability to develop his cognitive abilities. Johnson, Christie and Wardle reiterate that he will be in the best position to reason effectively in the course of selecting attractive toys. His movements will also be enhanced in instances where he gets the chance to play with these toys. It is obvious that bringing toys in the class setting will improve his motivation to want to learn more. He could start learning the art of drawing some of these toys hence reducing chances of unnecessary paintings on the book. Apart from observing the different colors of the toys, Johnnie should be instructed to come up with some of the toy sketches before painting them in the colors he sees. He will improve in his painting attributes.
Lastly, Johnnie appeared extremely superb on the issue of role-playing. In tandem with his prowess to act as a parent, his teachers could design short skits that will give him the chance to participate in his favorite sector. Charlesworth emphasizes that skits would be instrumental in motor skills development because they will give Johnnie the ability to memorize most of the parts of speech. He will be required to remember some of the exact words to be said to the next character in the skit hence strengthening his mental capabilities. Again, the interaction levels will be automatically improved as he continues interacting with other students through skits. He will improve his social knowledge and will not be limited to himself in the course of his growth. Therefore, Johnnie will be in the best position to grow effectively by interacting and memorizing parts of speech through skits.
In conclusion, observations conducted on Johnnie were vital in revealing his strongest and weakest points in terms of interacting with other people and engaging in non-play activities. As a four-year-old boy, Johnnie does not like playing with other children. He stays alone most of the time and uses different toys compared to other students. The paper suggests that teachers could help solve these problem through tournaments that ensure he meets other children and talks to them regularly. This will boost his interactions and enhance his motor skills. More so, his uncooperative nature when it comes to following rules could be addressed in the class setting. Teachers always have the responsibility of ensuring their students understand different trends in the society.
Following the laid down rules is one of these trends and should be understood by all children effectively. Lastly, Johnnie’s mental development will also be realized through a clear opportunity to draw and paint different toys. Purposeful drawing and painting of toys could develop his abilities into one of the best artists in the future. However, continuous encouragement is necessary for his success.