"Once children begin to integrate their learning into their play, the materials are no longer an end unto themselves; they've become another means for creating understanding and constructing meaning. They've become a means for living the learning."I sat there, staring off into space for several minutes. (I would chastise my students if they were staring off into space for several minutes during independent reading. I will have to be more careful about that.)
My initial reaction to this quote was a firm support for it. However, as I mulled it over I began to question my response. Is it a bad thing for the materials to no longer be an end unto themselves? Does everything have to come back to the learning?
I can't decide if I'm looking for a happy medium between what Debbie Miller is describing and a completely free play time or if I think one or the other is better. I'd love to hear thoughts.