Play and Policy in Early Childhood Education in the Asia Pacific Region

Susan Grieshaber
page. 7~28 / 2016 Vol.10 No.2


The place of play in early childhood curriculum documents in many countries in the Asia-Pacificregion is undeniable. Yet the constructs of play in documents from East Asia closely resemble ideasof play that are valued in western early childhood research, textbooks, policy documents and contexts.This policy analysis discusses the changing concepts of play that are promoted in several countriesand territories in the Asia-Pacific region. It investigates the challenges these changes present and thecontradictions that may arise in regard to local tradition, heritage and culture in three Asia-Pacificcontexts: Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Mainland China and Australia. The articleshows how policies change over time and provides a poignant representation of how early childhoodpolicy and curriculum aspirations for Hong Kong SAR, Mainland China and Australia might havemore in common than in the past.

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