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PBEL - Play Based Experiential Learning

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The PBEL toolkit was designed with the recognition that each school and individual teacher will have different needs as they consider incorporating Play-Based Experiential Learning into their environments. To better support your use of this toolkit we suggest taking time to reflect on the guiding questions and identifying areas you wish to focus on. You may choose to go through each section of the toolkit or focus on a particular area. You may find it helpful to implement the ideas presented over an extended period allowing enough time to assess how the strategies impact your classroom environment as a whole, and determine ways in which you can build on activities to further support children’s development.

The toolkit includes the following six sections:

  • What is Play Based Experiential Learning?
  • Learning Environments
  • Children's Play
  • Teacher Led Activities
  • Professional Development
  • Advocacy (Educating parents, policy makers, and others)

Each of the sections includes the following topics:

Topic Overviews
Topic Overviews provide context for each section in an easily read format that can be used as a refresher on the topic or offered as a hand out for staff and/or parents.

Reflections from the Field
We believe some of the best learning comes directly from practitioners. Reflections from the Field highlight best practices being utilized in play based learning environments across the country.

Sometimes it can be difficult to visualize what a strategy looks like in practice. Topic specific videos offer an opportunity to view Play-Based Experiential Learning in action. Videos are provided via YouTube to make them easily accessible and ready to share.

Each topic area will provide you with additional articles, links to relevant organizations, and resources to support your further understanding of the content.

Guiding Questions
In the toolkit, you will find guiding questions to help you reflect on your classroom environment, activities, and understanding of different types of play. Whether you are a new teacher or a seasoned professional, taking time to reflect can be key to opening the door to new opportunities in the classroom. Reflecting on these questions with colleagues can be extremely helpful.

As you work through the sections of the toolkit you may have questions or other great examples of Play- Based Experiential Learning you would like to share. We consider this toolkit a “Living Work” and as such will update content and resources, as newer information becomes available. To submit your question or feedback please contact us.

Copyright information: The toolkit as a whole has been copyrighted. We encourage you to create links to it on your websites or blogs. For permission to reprint materials, photos, or videos please write to