Here at Elizabeth Rummel School we recognize the importance of play in learning. Check out the Galileo Networks webpage on the importance of play in early learning.
This article in the New York Times also speaks to The Importance of Play as a Learning Tool.
Elizabeth Rummel School Tinkering Lab
This video shares the key learnings experienced by teachers and students at Elizabeth Rummel School when a tinkering space was created as an extension of the school learning commons.
Grade 3 students worked in teams in the Tinkering Lab to build the strongest bridges they could, using their choice of materials. They invited guest speaker Adrian Field to come and talk to them about the characteristics of strong bridges, and they read books and watched videos on the subject as well. The teams began by planning and agreeing on a bridge design, and then worked collaboratively to build the structure. This took perseverance, teamwork, and problem solving. Here are some student Google presentations outlining the process: