About this paper

Appears in:
Page: 3304 (abstract only)
Publication year: 2018
ISBN: 978-84-09-02709-5
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2018.0867

Conference name: 10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 2-4 July, 2018
Location: Palma, Spain

THE SUPERHERO PLAY CONUNDRUM OF THE EARLY YEARS– A REFLECTION FROM AN IRISH SCHOOLS’ PERSPECTIVE

T. Stokes

Maynooth University (IRELAND)
Superhero play is a type of fantasy play regularly witnessed in young children’s pretend play (Pugmire-Stoy,1992). School-based superhero fantasy play is a subject which invites diametrically opposed views, not least because of its links with commercial enterprise through the popular figures it represents captured on television and computer monitors across the world (Levin, 2003; Levin, 2008, Kinard, 2014). By its nature, it offers an examination of issues of power and control through the adoption of various roles by children.
In this paper, an overview of the contrasting views of superhero play assists in building an understanding of the tensions that exist between children’s attraction to superhero play and adults’ long-documented apprehensions about its desirability (Gussin-Paley, 1988; 2004; Carlsson-Paige, 2008). This segues into a critical consideration of superhero play as a vehicle for exploring the ‘big issues’ of life and death presented by play (Tovey, 2013). There follows an examination of the opportunities and challenges potential facilitation of superhero play in an Irish context would present further to a recent doctoral study in school-based pretend play (Stokes, 2016).
The doctoral study (Stokes, 2016) sought to explore the nature of pretend play using participatory research methods. Small-group semi-structured interviews highlighted the preponderance of superhero play episodes amongst children (n=77) and their associated attraction to it. An analysis of findings based on the interviews and children’s research artefacts leads to thematic discussion in this regard. Recommendations include further investigation of the possibilities for superhero play facilitation with a pedagogic focus, and an examination of teacher attitudes to same.

References:
Carlsson-Paige, N. (2008) Reclaiming Play: Helping children grow and learn through play in challenging times, Keynote Address at The International Froebel Society 3rd Biennial Conference, July 9-11, 200. Wheelock College, Boston: The Centre for Scholarship and Research.
Gussin-Paley, V. (1988) Mollie Is Three: Growing up in School. University of Chicago Press.
Gussin-Paley, V. (2004) A Child’s Work: The importance of fantasy play. Chicago, Illinois: University of Chicago Press.
Kinard, T.A. (2014) Emotional Learning and Violent Play: Sword Fighting in School, Early Years, 35 (2), pp20-23.
Levin, D.E. (2003) Beyond Banning War and Superhero Play: Meeting Children’s Needs in Violent Times, Young Children, May 2013, pp60-63.
Levin, D. E. (2008) Play: An Endangered Species, Keynote Address at The International Froebel Society 3rd Biennial Conference, July 9-11, 2008, Wheelock College, Boston, The Centre for Scholarship and Research
Stokes, T. (2016) What is ‘pretend play’? Investigating the perceptions of young children andother key stakeholders in three Irish primary school settings. Queens University, Belfast. Unpublished Doctoral Thesis.
Tovey, H. (2013) Bringing the Froebel Approach to your Early Years Practice. London: David Fulton.
@InProceedings{STOKES2018SUP,
author = {Stokes, T.},
title = {THE SUPERHERO PLAY CONUNDRUM OF THE EARLY YEARS– A REFLECTION FROM AN IRISH SCHOOLS’ PERSPECTIVE},
series = {10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN18 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-09-02709-5},
issn = {2340-1117},
doi = {10.21125/edulearn.2018.0867},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/edulearn.2018.0867},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Palma, Spain},
month = {2-4 July, 2018},
year = {2018},
pages = {3304}}
TY - CONF
AU - T. Stokes
TI - THE SUPERHERO PLAY CONUNDRUM OF THE EARLY YEARS– A REFLECTION FROM AN IRISH SCHOOLS’ PERSPECTIVE
SN - 978-84-09-02709-5/2340-1117
DO - 10.21125/edulearn.2018.0867
PY - 2018
Y1 - 2-4 July, 2018
CI - Palma, Spain
JO - 10th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN18 Proceedings
SP - 3304
EP - 3304
ER -
T. Stokes (2018) THE SUPERHERO PLAY CONUNDRUM OF THE EARLY YEARS– A REFLECTION FROM AN IRISH SCHOOLS’ PERSPECTIVE, EDULEARN18 Proceedings, p. 3304.
User:
Pass: