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Private Preschool Teachers’ Understanding and Implementation of Learning through

Play according to Malaysia’s National Preschool Standard Curriculum

Fong Jess Myn, Peshaja Rhubini a/p Salvaraju & Yip Chooi Sien
Faculty of Education
University Malaya

Abstract: Malaysia has recognised the importance of early childhood education as it provides
children with the foundation for their future development. Based on the National Preschool
Standard Curriculum (NPSC) 2017, learning through play has been identified as an effective
teaching and learning approach. It allows children to explore, construct and make sense of its
environment naturally. Teachers’ understanding on learning through play will be a vital key
in the implementation of it in early childhood education. Hence, the aim of this study is to
explore preschool teachers’ understanding and implementation of learning through play in
private preschools in Klang Valley. A qualitative approach has been used and five preschool
teachers from private setting have been selected based on purposive sampling. Our findings
through interview and documents analysis have indicated that not all preschool teachers use
Malaysia’s NPSC as their guideline for lesson planning even though they are supposed to
adhere to it. The teachers have a basic understanding on this teaching approach. However,
there are no true reflection on their lesson planning and elaboration on their execution.
Majority of the teachers involved in the study were more inclined to focus more academically
and forego play. This study has provided more insight to early childhood educators,
policymakers, curriculum developers and relevant authorities to the actual practice of
learning through play in some of the Malaysia’s private preschools in Klang Valley.
Keywords: Learning through play, Preschool, Curriculum, Malaysia

1.0 Introduction

Early education plays an important role in the development of children’s and can help
reduce current learning problem and achievement. The Ministry of Education of Malaysia has
included preschool education in the National Education System under the provisions of the
Education Act 1996. The formulation of the National Preschool Curriculum (NPC) in the
year 2003 became the turning point in the structure of curriculum innovation for preschool
education. NPC that was implemented until the end of 2009 was to nurture the potential of
pupils in all aspects in terms of development, basic skills and cultivation of positive attitudes
as a preparation to enter primary school (Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia, 2003) . The
formation of the National Preschool Standard Curriculum (NPSC) replaced the NPC
beginning from 2010 to achieve the objectives in physical, emotional, spiritual, intellectual
and social aspects (JERI) (Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia, 2009). NPSC stresses on
learning through play because play is important in fostering comprehensive development and
needs to be combined with all the things that children do (Nor Hashimah & Yahya, 2003) .
This is because play is life and is the highest level in the development of children as stated by
Froebel. The extent to which the teachers identify with the elements of play-based approach,
child-centred, and teacher-facilitated practices in the classrooms is arguably a measure of
their perceptions of the pedagogic change.

However, the lack of a common definition of play makes it hard to provide specific
recommendations for curriculum designers and educators to advocate a play-based approach
in early childhood classrooms in the face of increasing demands on academic skill. In
addition, different teacher perceive play differently in practice. Teachers’ perception of the
use of a play-based approach involves awareness, understanding, and interpreting how a play-
based approach provides learning benefits to children. According to Izumi, Taylor,
Samuelsson & Rogers (2010), teachers’ perceptions of play impacted children’s learning
experiences. Thus, it is essential for preschool teachers to understand the appropriate teaching
approach, such as learning through play and its role in early childhood development.
Teachers who fail to use appropriate teaching approaches, according to the development
stage, may struggle to help children reach their potential.

Throughout history from Aristotle to Montessori, the masters of education have


conveyed the overlying theme of “play as a vital key to a child’s development”. With this
simple yet complex act being so crucial, one can only assume that it is the core of to
curriculum in the classroom for young children. Children’s play their inborn disposition for
curiosity imagination and fantasy is being silenced in the high-tech, commercialized world
we have created. Through active engagement with ideas and knowledge, and also with the
world at large, teachers see children as better prepared to deal with tomorrow’s reality, a
reality of their own making. From this perspective, learning through play is crucial for
positive, healthy development, regardless of a child’s situation.

1.1 Problem Statement

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This study has been carried out due to the lack of information in private preschool
teachers’ understanding and implementation of Learning through play according to the
National Preschool Curriculum in Malaysia. Many researches focus generally on teaching
and learning approaches but not specifically in the learning through play approach. For
example, Abdullah, Md Nor, Damaety, & Chee (2017) did research focused on teaching
approaches in the classroom among preschool teachers in the Negeri Sembilan context. There
are also many researches in Malaysia that focused only on the advantages of learning through
play approach but not teachers’ understanding and implementation of this approach. For
instance, Ali, Aziz, & Majzub (2011) studied on teaching and learning reading through play
instead of exploring the teachers’ understanding and implementation of learning through
play.

1.2 Research Objective and Research Questions

The main goal of this study is to explore private preschool teachers understanding and
implementation of learning through play according to the Malaysia’s National Preschool
Standard Curriculum. Specifically, to answer the research questions below:

i. How do preschool teachers understand learning through play according to the


National Preschool Standard Curriculum?
ii. How do preschool teachers implement learning through play as one of their teaching
and learning approach?

1.3 Research Limitation

There were several limitations throughout the process of carrying out this study. Two
limitations were mentioned below:
i. Time Constraint
The time that we were given to carry out our research was short period due to some
circumstances. Therefore, the process of this study needed to be cut short and only
few respondents were taken into consideration.
ii. Availability of observation venue
We have approached some private preschools to run our observation with the teachers
and to see their curriculum-based teaching. But we got declined from all the
preschools that we approached due to busy scheduled year end programmes that the

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school need to prepare for. Despite that, we managed to interview 4 female private
preschool teachers and received lesson plans for analysis.

2.0 Literature Review

2.1 Background

Children love to play. It is only their natural instinct to be engaged in playing


activities. To children, this is fun and they are never tired to ask for more time to play.
National Association for Education of Young Children (NAEYC) has provided twelve
principles that informs on developmentally appropriate practice. One of the principles has
stated that play is an important vehicle in the development of self-regulation and for the
promotion of language, cognition and social competence (Position Statement NAEYC,
2009).The literature review will begin by looking into Malaysia’s National Preschool
Standard Curriculum (NPSC) and their learning standard. Then, I will explore on what is play
in the context of early childhood education. I shall then explore theory on play to have a
better understanding on their importance to the development of children.

2.2 Malaysia’s National Preschool Standard Curriculum (NPSC)

Malaysia has recognized on the important of early childhood education. Back in 2010,
Ministry of Education, Malaysia introduced National Preschool Standard Curriculum (NPSC)
for implementation in the whole of Malaysia. The aim of NPSC is provide standard guideline
to the development of children from age 4 to 6 years old in a holistic and integrated manner.
The Malaysia Ministry of Education wants to ensure that children are able to capture and
excel in their primary school journey by helping them to increase their skills, self-confidence,
positive self-esteem during their preschool years (Kurrikulum Standard Prasekolah
Kebangsaan, 2016). Public and Private preschool have been made mandatory to adhere to it.
However, it is worth to take note that preschool is still not mandatory in Malaysia. NPSC has
been reviewed and revised in 2016 to meet the new policy demand under the 2013-2025
Malaysia Education Development Plan. It is also to ensure that the implementation of NPSC
is in line with the current international standard.

The NPSC 2017 contains content standards, learning standards and assessment
standards. There are six spikes within NPSC 2017 framework. The six spikes will be 1)
Communication 2)Science and Technology 3)Grooming 4)Physical Development and

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Aesthetics 5)Humanity and 6)Spiritual, Attitudes and Values. Based on NPSC, learning
through play has been identified as one of the important teaching and learning approach to be
undertaken by teachers in the preschool. NPSC deemed learning through play as a structural
and systemic approach. It will provide children with opportunity to meaningful learning
experience. Play is in the nature of every child. What else could be better than to learning
through play? Children are free to explore, construct and discover naturally in their
environment through play.

2.3 Play vs. Learning through play

There seems to be ongoing debate among researcher on the concept of children’s play.
The findings from a research in 15 public kindergartens at Ontario, had shown the emerging
of two different pedagogical philosophies (Pyle and Danniels, 2017). 40% of the participants
(teachers) deemed that play and learning are dichotomous construct while the other 60% of
the participants (teachers) seemed to think otherwise. There were more free play in the
environment where play and academic learning are separated. On the other end, more
variation of play where observed in the classroom. These 60% participants saw play as an
approach that support academic learning cum as a development appropriate activity. Pyle and
Danniels (2017) examined the purpose of play and they have concluded that play and
learning through play are different. In their opinion, play is a far more open ended and
frequently debatable. Learning through play on the other hand serves as a purposeful
approach. It is for children to learn while playing.

Learning through play is a teaching approach which comprises the elements of


children directed, some degree of adults guidance, scaffolded learning objectives and it has to
be playful. (Weisberg et.al. 2013). Weisbery et. al. (2013) emphasized that learning through
play begins with the teachers or adults facilitate the learning process, put the learning goals
into perspective and strive hard to remain focus in these goals. Thus, children will be guided
in his way to the discovery of the environment in an effective manner. It was also stated that
learning through play contributes to the development of high self-efficacy in children.
Elizabeth Wood (2013) mentioned that there are link in between playing, learning and
teaching. Hence, integration of learning through play as part of the curriculum could provide
learning in a fun way in the aspect of literacy, numeracy, physical activity, science, creative
arts and sensory.

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2.4 Learning through play: Related theory and framework

The following section will discuss on pedagogical framework and theory that are
related to learning through play.

2.4.1 Pedagogical play framework by Edwards and Cutter-Mackenzie

Edwards and Cutter-Mackenzie (2013) had provided a framework by conceptualizing


play activities lying between free play and work as pedagogical play (learning though play).
Learning through play can be categorized into open-ended play, modelled play, and
purposefully framed play (Figure 1). Based on Cutter-Mackenzie and Edwards (2013), the
open-ended play are play experiences where materials representing an environment or
sustainability concept are given by teachers to children. Children will be given freedom to
examine and explore the materials as a form of learning about their environment. There will
be minimal engagement and interaction among teacher and children to allow full freedom in
exploration. The modelled play is play experiences where teachers provide demonstration or
explanation to the use of material representing an environmental or sustainability concept.
Then, children will be allowed to use the materials with minimal interaction with the
teachers. Lastly, the purposefully framed play is play experiences where children are
provided material suggestive of an environmental or sustainability concept by the teacher.
Children are given exposure to open-ended play, then modelled play and finally teacher-child
interaction.

Figure 1: Framework for Pedagogical Play (Learning through play)

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2.4.2 Vygotsky’s Social Development Theory

Based on Vygotsky’s Social Development Theory, the cognitive development of an


individual is highly associated to how one socializes. By nature, children are curious and they
are actively engaged in their own learning about their environment. Hence, children’s
development is greatly influenced by the interaction between children and their social
environment (Bodrova and Leong, 2015). The contributors in their social interaction will be
known as more knowledgeable other (MKO). MKO is person that are closely related or
associated with children. MKO could be teachers, parents, peers, sisters or brother. In other
words, MKO is a person who is proficient at a task and can assist someone in learning the
task. For example, Amy’s father is able to cycle on a bicycle and he can assist Amy in
learning how to cycle. In this context, Amy’s father is her MKO in learning how to cycle a
bicycle. In order for this to take place, there must be a social interaction between Amy and
her father. The window frame in which Amy learns how to cycle from her MKO (Amy’s dad)
is known by Vygotsky as zone of proximal development (ZPD). ZPD can also be described
as a window frame where a child learn and excel on her own through scaffolding by a MKO.
The inter relation between social interaction of MKO and ZPD are illustrated in Figure 2.

Figure 2: The inter relation between ZPD, MKO and social interaction.

Based on Vygotsky’s theory, play creates zone of proximal development (Vygotsky,


1967).Vygotsky stated: “In play a child is always above average, above his daily behavior, in
play it is as though he were a head taller than himself.” (Vygotsky, 1978). By nature, children
like to play. Play is a central source of development for children during their preschool years.
Through play, the development was leaded forward in two ways. Firstly, Vygotsky viewed

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play as a form of transition process in the development of imagination. It is a new formation
in children, which was form through action (play in this context). It could also be perceived
as the development of symbolic function in children, which is vital in cognitive development.
Children’s play is imagination in action while adolescent’s imagination is play without action
(Vygotsky, 1967).This will help children to move from lower mental function to higher
mental function. Children will take in from his environment, assimilate thing and become
more refine in their state of behavior. In short, they learn how to make sense of the people
and the culture around them. Secondly, play helps to strengthen children’s capacity to think
before they act. Through play, children learn to act with their internal ideas rather than
external stimuli. Play helps children to act against their impulse, developing good self-
regulation.

2.5 Theoretical framework

Learning through play will create a zone of proximal development, which is vital in
the development of children. This will help children to move from lower mental function to
higher mental function. Thus, helping them to make sense of the people and the culture
surrounding them. The theoretical framework to relate Vygotsky’s theory on social
development and learning through play are illustrated in Figure 3.

Figure 3: Theoretical framework on Vygotsky’s theory on social development and


learning through play

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3.0 Methodology

This study employed the systematic literature review structure, supported by semi
structured interview and document analysis. 5 journal articles have been adopted from several
sources to be reviewed and analyzed using thematic content analysis. The themes that were
developed from the literature review were supported by interview findings and lesson plan
analysis. A semi-structured interview protocol with 7 main questions was the main
instruments used for data collection. The interview questions were structured to answer the
research questions. This study also implemented document analysis for lesson plans that were
provided by the respondents. We use purposive sampling in selecting the respondents to do
the semi structured interview. The respondents consisted of 4 teachers which fulfilled a list of
requirements, such as working in a private preschool, with minimum of 2 years’ experience
in teaching, teaching or taught 4 to 6 years old children, and never attended any NPSC
trainings.

The purpose of the interviews was to probe preschool teachers understanding and
implementing of learning through play according to the National Preschool Curriculum in
Malaysia. The probing questions is based on respondent’s knowledge and understanding
about learning through play and how does it influence in children’s developmental areas and
does the National Preschool Curriculum engage in learning through play in preschool.

4.0 Results

This review paper was based on a systematic search of published research studies
available through November 2018. The University Malaya online library database and
Google Scholar online database were searched concurrently for entries any combination of
the terms: (1) Learning through Play and (2) Teaching Approach. This paper provided the
key findings of studies (refer to table 1) that have been conducted to explore private
preschool teachers’ understanding and implementation of learning through play according to
the Malaysia’s National Preschool Standard Curriculum. Following data analysis, data
regarding private preschool teachers’ understanding and implementation of learning through
play were classified and structured into four umbrella themes: a) teachers’ understanding of
learning through play approach, b) teachers’ teaching style, c) time of exposure to learning
through play and d) experiences and skills in implementing learning through play.

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4.1 Systematic Literature Review

Theme Paper 1 (2018) – Paper 2 (2014) – Paper 3 ( 2013)- Mixed


Qualitative Qualitative Method
(Private Preschools) (Public Preschools) (Private & Public Preschools)
Teachers’ NA Teacher’s understanding, Have understanding of learning
understanding of 2 levels: through play
learning through play Additional info: i. Beginner
Mismatch between ii. Advance Positive: 44/51 participant
philosophy & reality agreed play based learning
(1 preschool promoted Additional info: approaches is suitable &
play-based but not Have understanding of meet learning standard (via
implemented) overall teaching questionnaire)
approaches for preschool
Teachers’ Teaching Teacher-Centred & Most of the teacher used Among 12 respondents, mostly
Style Teacher-Dependent in 3 teacher-centred approach preferred to use teacher-
preschools. directed method.
Lesson conducted was
highly structured Additional info:
Focus in language & literacy
Time of exposure to Heavily inclined towards Element of learning Did not want to do play based
learning through play academic mastery through play rarely learning for literacy skills
(an evidence of limited implemented (having problem to control
exposure time to play) Academic driven student)
Academic Driven
Experiences and Skills NA 2/4 teachers admitted do Majority admitted they are
not have skills to lack of skills to use learning
implement learning materials for play
through play

Table 1: Results from systematic literature review

Study 1 by Tee Y.Q, & Md Nor M. (2018) provided a comprehensive description


about issues on teaching and learning in Malaysian private preschools. Results in this study
indicated that the preschools’ philosophy and the reality of curriculum delivery. Formal
preschool refuted the established principles of developmentally appropriate practice (DAP)
and requirements in the national preschool curriculum due to disproportionate focus on
academic outcomes. 1 of the preschool that were mentioned in this study promoted play-
based but the method was not implemented. Unfortunately, data that were retrieved from this
review did not display any information for teachers’ understanding of learning through play
approach. 3 respondents that were involved in this study clarified that lessons that were
conducted in their preschool was highly structural. All 3 preschools implemented teacher-
centred and teacher-dependent teaching style. This study also proved that there was limited
time exposure for learning through play. All the classroom activities were heavily inclined
towards academic mastery and subject matter. Nonetheless, there were no evidence for
teachers’ experiences and skills in implementing learning through play in this study.

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Study 2 by Abdullah M., Md Nor M., Damaety F., & Chee J. (2017) discussed in
detail about the teaching approaches in the classroom among preschool teachers based on
management aspects of teaching in the classroom. Findings from this study demonstrated that
preschool teachers possessed a clear view in managing the administrative aspects of teaching.
Yet, they had no complete comprehension about teaching approaches and the integration of
all the aspects in teaching according to the NPSC. Under the first theme, this study disclosed
that teachers’ have understanding of overall teaching approaches for preschool and this is
divided into beginner level and advance level. Most of the respondents that were involved in
this study used teacher-centered teaching style in their classroom. This study indicted that all
the preschools were very academically driven, hence element of learning through play was
rarely implemented in the classroom. This also meant that children had limited exposure time
to learn through play. For the last theme, 2 out of 4 respondents admitted that they did not
have appropriate skills in implementing learning through play. Teachers seldom carry out
play in the classroom because it was said difficult to them.

The last study by Puteh S.N & Ali A. (2013) were carried out to find out teachers’
perception towards the use of the play-based approach in the language and literacy
development of preschoolers. In general, teachers had positive response towards play-based
approach. They believed learning through play to be beneficial to children’s development and
that play will establish effective learning. In this study, it was proved that teachers’ have
understanding of learning through play approach where 44 out of 51 participants agreed that
play is suitable for children and it meets learning standard. The teaching style that were
preferred by the respondents in this study were mostly formal teacher-direct instruction to
teach language and literacy skills. As being explained in this study, many teachers did not
implement play-based learning for literacy because they had problem in controlling the
students and also to focus on academic achievement. This proved that children did not have
the time of exposure to learning through play in their curriculum. As for the last theme, a
large number of respondents admitted that they received play materials but did not have skills
to use those materials effectively to interest children.

4.2 Interview and Lesson Plan analysis

Excerpts from the data, including interview transcripts as well as lesson plan analysis
results were used to support this systematic literature review. Each theme was elaborated to

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illustrate the understanding and implementation of learning through play in the preschool
teaching and learning process.

4.2.1 Teachers’ Understanding of Learning through Play Approach

Data gathered from the interview implied that private preschool teachers acknowledge
that learning through play is one of the teaching and learning approach under the NPSC. They
are also aware of the intention and benefits of learning through play approach. This concurred
with three of the participants who had answered the first question of the interview as
transcript below.

Researcher: What comes to mind when you think about learning through play in
Malaysia?

Teacher 1: And I believe many teachers implement this only to fulfil the guidelines
from the Malaysia’s National Preschool Curriculum. The intention is good
and it’ll only really benefit children if play’s implemented properly.

Teacher 3: One of the teaching and learning approaches which is supported and made
compulsory under NPSC. …It can be free play among children
themselves. Also, it could be play based learning with minimal guidance
from the teacher.

Teacher 4: There are many activities and programmes that are running in the
preschool which involve learning through play with games, and also
relates the integrated subjects such as maths, language, music and so on.

Unfortunately, data that were retrieved from the lesson plan document analysis did not
implicit any information for this theme.

4.2.2 Teachers’ Teaching Style

Findings from the interview transcript implicated that preschool teachers implement
teacher-centred or teacher dependent lesson plan in their classroom. It also revealed that
teachers held excessive control in the preschool classroom which leads to the lack of
opportunities for children to express themselves due to the authority of the teachers. This is
supported by the example of response by the interview respondents in this study.

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Researcher: To what extend you use the guideline or materials?

Teacher 1: The content of the lesson plan is quite structured as there are academic
activities that have to be done to achieve certain goals. Most of the
structured classes are teacher-dependent.

Teacher 3: … most of the lesson plan are more inclined to teacher-centred rather
than child-centred.

Data gathered from the lesson plan analysis previewed that most of the activities that
were planned for all the respondents’ classroom were teacher-dependent activities. These
lessons were organized in a way that is structural for children to follow adequately. It was
either very academically focused, or filled with other activities but play, such as library time,
speech and drama class and general knowledge class. All the respondents implement teacher-
centered teaching in their classroom with minimal evidence of play time included in their
lesson plan.

4.2.3 Time of Exposure to Learning through Play

The interview findings suggested that the time for practicing learning through play in
a preschool classroom is rather unstable or limited. There are no fixed time slots for play in
their lesson. Play befitted as an option for teachers to apply only when they have extra time to
fill up during their lesson. The amount of time that children get to be exposed to play is
restricted with a structured classroom schedule. As two of the respondents aptly described as
below:

Researcher: How do you think learning through play is reflected in your lesson plan?

Teacher 2: Sometimes there are play time sometimes there are none, it depends on
the class dynamic. Mostly before morning circle time, children get to have
free play during toilet time. Other time of the day will focus more on
structured activities.

Teacher 3: The true reflection of learning through play can normally be observed on
Friday. As for Monday to Thursday, I must admit there is some form of
limitation at times.

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Lesson plan analysis showed that children in 3 out of 4 respondents’ classroom had
minimal time exposure to play. Teacher 1 only included 3 gym classes in the weekly lesson
plan, and Teacher 2 had only 1 game slot throughout the week except for speech and drama
class. Teacher 3’s lesson plan included pretend play in one of the day in the lesson plan,
whereas there is no prove of play displayed in Teacher 4’s lesson plan.
4.2.4 Teachers’ Experiences and Skills in Implementing Learning through Play

One of the theme identified in this study included the experiences and skills teachers
has in terms of learning through play approach they should equipped for their preschool
classroom. Two respondents indirectly disclosed that they have limited ideas in implementing
learning through play in their classroom activities. They had to seek for ideas from external
source like the internet or to come out with their own ideas due to the lack of information in
the implementation of learning through play in the NPSC:

Researcher: Which strategies or activities do you use to implement learning through


play?

Teacher 1: If it’s not stated in the lesson plan, then I will search online for some
ideas.

Teacher 4: I use own strategies which I feel there’s good input for children’s
learning area.

Moreover, preschool teachers are aware that skills and experiences play important roles in
facilitating and supporting learning through play in a classroom setting. Teachers need to
have the proper skills to practice facilitated play to deliver positive benefit to a child but
respondents has disclosed that not all teachers that is in the educating industry are equipped
with this set of skills to implement learning through play approach. This is reflected in the
response of two teachers that were involved in the interview:

Researcher: What do you think about the role of teacher being to facilitate and support
learning through play?

Teacher 1: Being a facilitator, a teacher might need to be equipped with skills like
asking open ended questions to encourage a child’s thinking. But not all
teachers that I encounter are trained to be a skilled teacher.

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Teacher 3: However, my experience with learning through play is relatively lacking. I
hope the management will be able to provide training in helping me to
gain more knowledge in this aspect.

Unfortunately, data that were retrieved from the lesson plan document analysis did not
implicit any information for this theme.

5.0 Conclusion

Findings from this study indicated that private preschool teachers have basic
understanding about learning through play approach that is included in the newly revised
NPSC. They were aware that this learning and teaching approach is stated under the NPSC
and has to be adhered by all preschool teachers. They were acknowledged about the intention
and benefits of the learning through play approach. Nonetheless, these private preschool
teachers did not elaborate much on what type of play and how to play while they answer their
interview. This may reflect that they have less knowledge in understanding of the
implementation of learning through play. There are many types of play that can be
implemented in a classroom and each play benefits children in a different way. If teachers do
not have proper knowledge to apply any suitable play, the objective of learning through play
in a preschool setting could not be delivered.

Through this study, it is also reflected in the lesson plans that there were limited
implementation of learning through play in the private preschool teachers’ teaching and
learning process. As stated in the lesson plan, most of the structured classroom activities are
not child-centered. In a teacher-directed classroom, there are limited spaces for a child to
develop through play. Most of the time in the classroom learning was allocated for academic
activities. This proved that learning through play approach is still not fully implemented by
teachers. Preschool teachers need more guidance on how to practice learning through play in
their teaching and learning process more effectively. Instead of the formal teacher-directed
teaching, some of the academic contents can be also taught using the learning through play
method. This is one of the reasons where preschool teachers should be educated to perform
learning through play efficiently to deliver a more lively method of teaching to substitute
academic formal learning.

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6.0 Suggestions

Learning through play approach can be a big part of children’s learning if it is


implemented appropriately. It brings benefits such as active learning that some other
teaching and learning approaches fail to present. Only if educators have the experiences and
proper skill sets, learning through play can be applied to its maximum capacity. Therefore,
early childhood educators should be readily equipped with more knowledge and skills in
learning through play implementation through various sources. Trainings and workshop can
be conducted in various settings and centers to cultivate the understanding and
implementation of learning through play approach.

Furthermore, this study has also provided more insight to policymakers, curriculum
developers and relevant authorities to the actual practice of learning through play in some of
the Malaysia’s private preschools in Klang Valley, looking forward to more enhancements
for better learning through play implementation in order to facilitate children’s learning in a
fun way. The NPSC which act as an official guide for all the preschool educator should be
designed in more detailed for all the learning and teaching approaches that were included,
especially the implementation guide for learning through play approach.

On the other hand, future researchers might need to enhance a few elements to be able
to generalize the findings for a population. Researchers have to consider allocating a more
sufficient amount of time and invest time efficiently in order to have a smooth process for a
more informative study. More choices of observation venue should be taken into
consideration since the beginning of the study, taking into account some schools will be very
packed with school programs especially at the last quarter of the year.

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Bodrova, E., & Leong, D. J. (2010). Curriculum and Play in Early Child Development. In P.
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Bodrov E. & Leong D.J. ( 2015).Vygotskian and Post-Vygotskian Views on Children’s Play.
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Cutter-Mackenzie, A. & Edwards, S (2013).Toward a Model for Early Childhood


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