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Let's Play!

Let's Play!



$27.00 USD

Available As


    Kids love recess and playground time. But some kids have not developed the skills they need to take part in physical activities on the playground, and those kids are often left standing alone on the side, watching others play. The children are left inactive and isolated, which can lead to long-lasting negative effects on their self-esteem.

    Let’s Play! Promoting Active Playgrounds will help you make sure that no kids are left on the sidelines watching and waiting for the bell or for a parent to pick them up. Not all kids automatically have, or learn, the skills they need to be active and have fun on the playground. But through Let’s Play! , you can ensure that every child under your care has a repertoire of movement skills to be active on the playground.

    This book will help you
    • know the activities that children ages 3 to 8 typically play on the playground,
    • assess the specific skills they need to take part in those activities,
    • recognize kids who are left out of the activities or choose to withdraw from them, and
    • help those kids to acquire the skills they need to be part of the playground action.
    Let’s Play! offers simple tips for teaching playground skills and games. It includes an assessment protocol that uses kids’ own reports of their activity—something they find fun because of the illustrations and you’ll find useful because of what you learn about their preferences and achievements. This is the first book to provide such an assessment protocol of gross motor play on the playground; with it, you can screen 30 kids in 30 minutes.

    In addition, Let’s Play! offers a CD-ROM bound in the book, which includes 30 illustrated forms that you can print to put this practical children’s play development system into action immediately.

    Let’s Play! will help you make a difference in children’s lives. Through this book and CD-ROM package, you can assume a vital role in ensuring that every child has the opportunity to participate in playground activities. Children spend less time being active at home, so Let’s Play! will help kids increase their physical activity and reduce their likelihood of obesity. This resource will also help kids make friends on the playground and become active in the social groups that form during unstructured free time.


    Reference for early childhood, daycare, classroom, physical education, and after-school teachers, as well as public school administrators. Reference for all playground leaders in physical education, recreation, and youth organizations. Also a supplementary text or reference for students in early childhood courses and for the International Playground Equipment Manufacturers Association.

    Table of Contents

    How to Use This Book and CD-ROM

    Chapter 1. Understanding the Value of Play
    Physical Benefits
    Social Benefits
    What Can Adults Do to Help?
    The Uniqueness of Each Child and Each Situation

    Chapter 2. Understanding What Motivates Children to Participate on the Playground
    Do I Want to Do This?
    Can I Do This?
    Am I Good Enough?
    Encouraging Participation

    Chapter 3. Understanding Assessment
    Why Assess?
    Assessing Participation
    Assessing Skills

    Chapter 4. Using the Playmap to Assess Participation
    The Playmap
    Self-Report Method
    Interpreting the Results
    Observation Method
    Interpreting Observations of a Single Child

    Chapter 5. Using the Playlist to Assess Skills
    Step 1: Choose Activities to Assess
    Step 2: Determine the Current Skill Repertoire
    Step 3: Use Prompts to Determine Possible Skills
    Step 4: Choose Skills to Teach

    Chapter 6. Teaching Playground Skill
    Direct Instruction Model
    Environmental Prompts
    Verbal Prompts
    Visual Prompts
    Physical Prompts
    Using Prompts and Direct Instruction
    Teaching Ball Skills

    Chapter 7. Facilitating Effective Practice
    Structuring Practice
    Encouraging Self-Regulated Practice
    Practicing Different Versions of the Same Skill
    Practicing Different Skills Together

    Chapter 8. Teaching in a Positive Climate
    Performance Climates
    Mastery Climates
    Competitive and Cooperative Activities

    Chapter 9. Playing Games
    Tag: A Universal Game
    Tag Variations
    Games Using Tag Concepts
    Teaching Tag Skills

    About the Author
    About the Illustrator
    How to Use the CD-ROM

    About the Author

    Jane Watkinson, PhD, is the dean of faculty of kinesiology and recreation management at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Before her role as dean, she was the associate dean academic from the faculty of physical education and recreation at the University of Alberta in Edmonton Alberta. Dr. Watkinson earned the McCalla Award from the University of Alberta and CAHPER Scholar Award during her career. In her free time, she enjoys playing squash, racquetball, and the piano.


    About the Illustrator

    Terry Watkinson earned the challenging BSc degree in medical illustration and went on to teach surgical illustration and perspective for the University of Toronto’s biomedical communications program. His illustrations are featured in many medical textbooks and journals. Terry is now an artist and illustrator living in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, where he creates a brilliant sense of light, depth, and emotion in his spectacular wilderness scenes and cityscapes.