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Sarah Watkins on Daring Play

In this session, we discuss one aspect of Sarah’s book – daring play. Sarah explains why she prefers the term ‘daring’ to risky and how this change of words brings a whole new layer to the play pedagogy. We also discuss ‘hazards’ and how to approach this in an Early Years setting, including some common hazards you may find in your own setting.

Sarah has some very interesting perspectives on weapon play and how to encourage climbing (without coercion!). We finish the session by discussing how to work with parents to support daring play.
· June 24, 2022

Before teaching, Sarah Watkins worked as an Arts Officer for the local authority, and also managed projects for a national media charity, giving a platform to unheard voices. Sarah Watkins retrained to become a primary teacher and Forest School leader and taught for just over a decade.

During her teaching career, Sarah was made Head of English for a federation of 10 schools and became Head of School at the school she attended as a child.

Sarah currently lectures at her local university on ITE, SEND, and Children and Families modules. Sarah’s first book, on outdoor play and wellbeing, was published by Routledge in 2021 and her second book, on sustainability, will be published in 2022. Sarah is a regular columnist for Teach Primary and Teach Early Years.

Her book Outdoor Play for Healthy Little Minds Practical Ideas to Promote Children’s Wellbeing in the Early Years is published by Routledge.

In this session, we discuss one aspect of Sarah’s book – daring play. Sarah explains why she prefers the term ‘daring’ to risky and how this change of words brings a whole new layer to the play pedagogy. We also discuss ‘hazards’ and how to approach this in an Early Years setting, including some common hazards you may find in your own setting.

Sarah has some very interesting perspectives on weapon play and how to encourage climbing (without coercion!). We finish the session by discussing how to work with parents to support daring play.

Links:

Find Sarah’s book here: https://www.routledge.com/Outdoor-Play-for-Healthy-Little-Minds-Practical-Ideas-to-Promote-Childrens/Watkins/p/book/9780367683436

Sarah’s article from a few years ago on sustainability: https://www.teachearlyyears.com/enabling-environments/view/how-to-create-an-eco-friendly-early-learning-environment

Research Sarah referred to:

Kathryn Solly Risk, Challenge and Adventure in the Early Years: A practical guide to exploring and extending learning outdoors on Amazon here: https://amzn.to/3wFhU0m

Ellen Sandseter – categories of ‘risky play’ https://ellenbeatehansensandseter.com/

Forest School Association https://forestschoolassociation.org/

We don’t play with guns here by Penny Holland https://amzn.to/3PHNxyX

The Headteacher’s Handbook by Rae Snape https://amzn.to/3GfldQe

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