Children at Trinity Lutheran Early Childhood Center of Freistadt experience a devotion to warmth, support, and safety while the wonder of childhood is nurtured, and children actively engage (physically, verbally or through observation) in their own learning, discovery, and adventures where they are empowered to take physical, emotional, and intellectual risks.

  • Discovery of God’s creation
  • Interests of the child are honored; Children are empowered to lead their own play
  • Children feel a sense of ownership of their discoveries and of the learning process
  • Willingness to try new things
  • Increases creative problem solving and flexible thinking abilities
  • Boosts critical thinking
  • Children develop conflict resolution skills
  • The development of high order thinking habits and processes
  • Risk assessment and management
  • Increased retention of learning
  • Cultivate relationships with peers
  • Fewer classroom behavior issues
  • Allowed to experience boredom; and the really amazing things that can blossom from it

Amazing Benefits of Child-Directed Play by Pop-Up Adventure Play’s P.L.A.Y. Guide

  • Caregivers create an environment of Christian love, trust, joy, engagement and risk
  • Caregivers provide the time, freedom and space for the children
  • They practice deep listening and active observation
    • Notice child’s conversations, words, actions and friendships
    • Take note of their schemas and their developmental markers
    • Ensure hazards are removed.
      • We believe in the value of age-appropriate healthy risk taking. Learning to take appropriate risks can help children develop confidence and improve executive function as they learn to consider and assess challenging situations. We feel that learning to address these sorts of risks is a valuable skill. Healthy risk taking helps develop the ‘gut’ feeling of caution. Although we strive to keep our play spaces safe, we do intentionally provide age-appropriate risks. We define a risk as a challenge the child identifies and chooses to negotiate anyway. A hazard is a situation in which the child has no control.
  • Caregivers understand the experience of the child on the child’s terms, and create a framework for allowing the child to add complexity and depth to their experiences
  • Caregivers document children’s investigations, curiosities, and projects via our narratives, photos and by valuing their artifacts
  • Caregivers create boundaries and set expectations/standards.
  • We are deeply honor children when we speak with them about what we witness them doing.
  • Caregivers will interact with the children by invitation only
    • The play belongs to the children; the caregivers will not assume the children need or want them to be a part of it
  • Caregivers will not interfere based on their “adult knowledge” of the world
    • Allowing children to explore and discover; try and fail and try again
    • The best learning comes as a result of authentic application and natural consequences
    • Caregivers offer questions to encourage learning vs offering solutions right away
  • Caregivers will intervene when necessary
    • Children will be encouraged to problem solve with their peers
    • Caregivers will step in when children are not able to come to a resolution or when danger/hazards arise
  • Caregivers will be models of the behaviors we expect from the children
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