Not Just Cute, the Podcast is like listening to a conversation with your nerdy best friend. Who happens to be obsessed with child development. Each episode covers a different topic related to parenting, early childhood education, and healthy, whole child development in order to support teachers and parents in serving young children.
Episode 67: Why We Play at the Sensory Table
This episode’s focus is sensory play. We’ll take a look at why these bins full of rice, water, goop, and other media aren’t just a big mess waiting to happen, they’re a really important key to supporting healthy child development.
Find Show Notes: https://notjustcute.com/podcast/episode67
Episode 66: Why We Play with Blocks
This episode’s focus is the block area. We look at what’s going on in those busy building centers of the early childhood classroom, and why it’s important to keep those big spaces open for construction, even when there’s pressure to move the blocks out to make room for “real school”.
Don’t underestimate the simple nature of a collection of rectangles, squares, and triangles made out of hardwood maple. When children play with construction toys (which include the ever-present unit blocks, of course, but also other open-ended building toys like Legos, magnet tiles, bristle blocks, architectural blocks etc.) they get hands-on experience that simply can’t be replaced by virtual imitations.
Find show notes at https://notjustcute.com/podcast/episode66
Episode 65: Why We Play for Soft Skills
While some schools may claim they’re moving away from play and toward more direct academic instruction as a way to prepare children for their future careers, business leaders repeatedly share that soft skills are becoming increasingly relevant in the workplaces of today and of the future. In this episode, we’ll talk about how pushing out play also pushes out prime opportunities for building essential soft skills. Soft skills that not only enhance careers, but improve life.
FInd show notes at: https://notjustcute.com/podcast/episode65
Episode 64: Why We Play for Brain Development and Real Learning
This is the third episode in a nine-episode series! (Find them all here.)
In this episode, we’re digging into why we play for brain development and real learning. There are many people who say they support play for young children, but question whether or not we need play in school, or who might argue that play is important, as long as we get the work of learning done first. So today, we’ll talk about why play and learning aren’t as separate as people might think.
Find show notes at https://notjustcute.com/podcast/episode64
Episode 63: Why We Play for Mental Health
In this episode, we’re digging into why we play for mental health. It’s not just something we think is true or that sounds nice, it’s a claim that’s backed up by science and statistics. There’s something about play that is essential to developing and maintaining our mental health. We’ll dig into those findings and what they mean for our youngest learners.
Find show notes at https://notjustcute.com/podcast/episode63
Episode 62: The Why We Play Special Series
I’m excited to be kicking off something special today. For years, I’ve been speaking at workshops and conferences about the power of play in the early learning environment, which sparked the series of parent letters I’ve written, called Why We Play. This month, I’ll be sharing a special podcast series with the same name: Why We Play. Every Tuesday and Thursday in February, you’ll find a new episode sharing the science and stories behind why we play, evidence that play is not just cute, it’s incredibly powerful.
This Why We Play podcast series is long overdue – I’m so excited to jump into a topic I’m SO passionate about and to share some fascinating, compelling research that I absolutely love nerding out on. I hope you’ll join me for the whole month of February.
Whether you’re a champion for play or a playful learning skeptic, this series is just for you.
Find Show Notes at https://notjustcute.com/podcast/episode62