Date of Graduation

Fall 2014


Master of Science in Early Childhood and Family Development


Early Childhood and Family Development

Committee Chair

Joanna Cemore Brigden


The purpose of this qualitative case study was to investigate how kindergarten children naturally integrate writer's workshop into ongoing play activities during free choice centers. The new Common Core standards have placed great emphasis on high standards and rigorous learning. In the classroom, this rigorous learning has translated to more instruction and a reduction in free choice centers. In this study, the students were videotaped at the writing center during free choice centers. Brief episodes were isolated and analyzed using microanalysis to better understand how writing and play are integrated in a natural play setting. By looking closely at the actions of one boy, evidence of an internal plan in both his writing and play was discovered. In some cases, writing and play were integrated so seamlessly it was impossible to separate the play from the writing. There was a great depth of learning as the students taught each other, shared information from their own experiences, and worked together to accomplish their goals. The Common Core seeks to create high levels of rigorous learning by reducing the amount of time spent in free play. However the results suggest that students are already rigorously learning with their internal thought process and achieving high levels of learning in the natural setting of play. KEYWORDS: play, free choice centers, writing, writer's workshop, common core, micro analysis


play, free choice centers, writing, writer's workshop, common core, micro analysis

Subject Categories

Child Psychology


© Meaghan Anne Bonham

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