FREE PLAY AT THE WALDORF PRESCHOOL
The article considers the problems of children's play activities in preschool institutions that work according to the Waldorf method. It is emphasized that the modern world with its numerous challenges, instability, rapid economic changes, needs to study a problem of healthy and harmonious personality development, who is capable for active life and self-realization. It is noted that Waldorf pedagogy for more than a hundred years of functioning in the world educational space has accumulated significant experience in organizing the lives of different age children, in particular, approaches to education and development of preschoolers based on the humanistic concept. These studies become very important in the context of society democratization and finding ways to modernize the education system in Ukraine. The ideas of the humanistic educational system, tested in European countries and the experience of Waldorf teachers in Ukraine, can be used in preschools and family education. The article analyzes the process of child development from birth to seven years in accordance with the concept of Waldorf pedagogy, identifies the features of each age stage, describes the priorities of preschool education of different ages through example and imitation, and shows the role of educators in creating a healthy harmonious environment and moral qualities of children. Special attention is paid to the organization of free play as a means of developing thinking, imagination, attention, communication. The conditions that stimulate the playful activity of preschoolers, promote their activity, help to accumulate life competencies, interaction skills and correct behavior are determined. Free play arises from the child's imagination, it is spontaneous, and so the teacher should only help children to realize their own ideas, based on the image created by children's imagination. It is noted that in the Waldorf children's institution natural materials, toys created by parents, educators and children are mostly used for free play, which stimulates a creative approach to the possibility of using familiar objects in new unusual combinations and roles. Free play has a positive effect on the development of four sensations: touch, balance, movement and life, which are actively formed in the first seven years of life. So, the study and implementation of free play experience from Waldorf preschools is relevant for modern preschool education in Ukraine.
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