| || || Fa'oliu-Havea, Pō'alo'i Poliana|
| || || Ako mo e va'inga : a Tongan conceptualisation of play and learning in the early years|
Author:Fa'oliu-Havea, Pō'alo'i Poliana
Institution: The University of the South Pacific
Subject: Early childhood education -- Activity programs -- Tonga, Tongans -- Education (Early childhood), Play -- Tonga -- Psychological aspects
Call No.: LB 1139 .3 .T6 F36 2017
Copyright:Under 10% of this thesis may be copied without the authors written permission
Abstract: This doctoral dissertation applied a qualitative study to find out how the practice of young children’s (0-8 years) structured and free play are conceptualised within the context of Tongan families and early childhood centers. It utilised the indigenous tools of talanoa (a combination of storying and semi-structured interview) and tālanga (focus group) to acquire insight into Tongan parents’ and preschool teachers’ perceptions of and behaviour towards childhood play. This generated authentic socio-cultural scenarios of the assumptions as to why play is often neglected and undervalued as a learning tool. Challenges include a lack of: adult awareness/support; teacher preparation, practice, training; curriculum development, educational policy/planning; proactive stakeholders to push early learning into a privileged position; failure of education systems to recognise play as an asset to learning and development; misconception that formal instruction alone yields learning outcomes; and the dearth of local research to navigate decision making and good practice that is culturally appropriate, structured and empirically defined.