The delight and pleasure in play enhances a child’s physical, social and cognitive development. In fact, many would agree that play is just as important for all ages!
This term in Year 10 Child Studies, we have been learning about the importance of play and exploring some of the research that has been done by psychologists around the world who advocate for play-based learning. Armed with this knowledge students participated in a practical activity where they had to produce high-quality design solutions suitable for an intended purpose, using appropriate technologies skillfully and safely. The students aim was to create an activity that facilitated imaginary play.
Students examined the appeal of face-painting and researched some of its benefits using both primary and secondary sources. Professional face-painting artist, Emma Styles from Laughing Llama Dance and Drama, was on hand to offer students her expert knowledge and understanding. Emma is an extremely passionate face-painter and advocates its use as a way to build children’s confidence and social development. She described the magic of seeing a child feel like the centre of attention as they are painted and encouraged the girls to harness their creativity to produce creative designs. Emma gave us many great tips for connecting to and calming children during the painting process and she also showed us the face-painting equipment and tools: Petal sponge, one-stroke cake, split-cake (rainbow cake), flat brush and round brush.
Students learnt to activate the paint to give it a creamy consistency and then practiced various techniques, including the tear drop technique, and to experiment with thick and thin strokes on their own arms. Students also learnt about the importance of health and safety including using non-toxic paints and utilising important resources such as butcher’s paper to protect tables and face wipes for skin.
Finally, it was time to experiment on each other! Students volunteered their arms or faces for their assessment practical and showcased some stunning work. It was evident from all of their smiles and laughter that they were feeling good about their work and positive about their experiences. Some even felt like it would be a fun career choice or side hustle as they plan for their futures.
Overall it was fantastic experience and our students learnt a lot about play, had some fun and developed their confidence working with children.
- Lucy Webb