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Orson puts fireman to bed

Orson, at 2.5 years, has complex pretend play in which he weaves a story with a sequence of events. With Mum as his audience, Orson moves easily between his imaginative scenario with the little figures, to fetching the book he needs since the fireman is going to bed.

Good for looking at

  • Early literacy
  • A love of books
  • Pretend play
  • Communication
  • Language
  • Symbolising
  • Small world play

 

Orson, at 2.5 years, has complex pretend play in which he weaves a story with a sequence of events. With Mum as his audience, Orson moves easily between his imaginative scenario with the little figures, to fetching the book he needs since the fireman is going to bed.

Notice

  • What cues can you see that show what Orson is interested in? (Look out for non-verbal and body language as well as spoken language)
  • How is he learning? Which areas of development, engagement and characteristics of learning can you observe?
  • In what ways does the adult support Orson’s learning?
  • How does the environment support the children’s learning?
  • What is valuable about the materials provided?

Reflect

What are your thoughts about:

  • What the different parts of Orson’s imaginative scenario are for the fireman and other little figures?
  • Orson’s concentration, given that he leaves the room for what he needs and then settles himself back into the pretend play?
  • How Orson use his spoken language in this sequence – what kind of words and comments? In what ways does he show his understanding of question and answer?
  • Mum’s role, she is a vital audience and she is attentive. In what other ways does she contribute to her young son’s play?
  • Orson’s physical skills as he moves the little figures – what is he able to do?

Respond

What next:

Orson has plenty of time and suitable resources for him to weave his pretend stories. As Orson puts his fireman figure to bed you can guess that he is bringing in his own experiences: that of course you have a story before you settle to sleep. Orson has a range of little figures and the right size furniture for them. However, his resources for pretend play still leave plenty of scope for his imagination. Orson does his own ‘voiceover’ and any ‘dialogue’.

  • What kind of play resources do you offer to children? Do the resources leave plenty of scope for their imagination and direction of the pretend scenarios?
  • Do you have a lot of battery operated toys? When an electronic toy makes all the noises, children press buttons. They will not bother to make bus noises, pretend about the ringing of a telephone or do the crying of the baby doll.
  • In what ways are you an attentive audience for children’s pretend play? In what ways do they invite you to join in or do you carefully make a suggestion
    Orson’s Mum is not silent; she makes some comments on what Orson is doing and his choices.
    Orson chooses to repeat and practise some words that his Mum says – like ‘police’ – which are relevant to his play.