Explorations Early Learning

Promoting play, defending childhood, and empowering caregivers.

Explorations Early Learning

Cows In The Basement

Cows In The Basement


The early years should be full of whimsical fantasy play, yet in many classrooms, time for such play is limited as more and more time is devoted to teacher-led activities. This session looks at why children should have plenty of time for self-directed fantasy and imaginative play, creative storytelling, and make-believe and offers tips for supporting such play.

Outcomes / Goals

Attendees will:

  • Leave with ideas for supporting fantasy and imaginative play
  • Practice using their imaginations
  • See the relationship between fantasy play and learning

Competency Area

  • Alabama | Learning Experiences And Enrichment / Child Development
  • Illinois | Curriculum Or Program Design
  • Michigan | Teaching And Learning
  • Missouri | Use A Broad Repertoire Of Teaching Skills And Strategies For Learning
  • Nebraska | Planning Learning Experiences And Curriculum
  • Oklahoma | Learning Environments And Curriculum
  • South Dakota | Learning Environments
  • Wisconsin | Learning Experiences, Strategies, And Curriculum
  • CDA | Advancing Children’s Physical And Intellectual Development

Clock Hours

Available in 60 and 90-minute formats


This is the breakdown for the 60-minute version of the session:

Introduction05 minutesMonologue
Fantasy Play And Learning20 minutesDiscussion
Supporting Fantasy Play15 minutesDiscussion
Imagination Practice15 minutesGroup Activity
Conclusion05 minutesMonologue

Related Resources

This session is based in part on content from these sources (affiliate links):

  • Let Them Play
  • Let’s Play
  • Let’s All Play

Content Level

Beginner / Intermediate

Age Group Focus

  • Toddlers (12 months to 36 months)
  • Preschool (36 months to 5 years)
  • School Age (5 years to 12 years)
  • Adults

Target Audience

  • Family Child Care Providers
  • Child Care Center Teachers
  • Child Care Center Directors
  • Head Start Teachers
  • Head Start Administrators
  • Early Head Start Teachers
  • Service Coordination Staff
  • Technical Assistance Specialists
  • Home Visitors
  • Parents