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Peer-Review Record

Children’s Play—The Educator’s Opinion

Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(4), 266; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9040266
Reviewer 1: Anonymous
Reviewer 2: Anonymous
Reviewer 3: Anonymous
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(4), 266; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9040266
Received: 3 July 2019 / Revised: 21 October 2019 / Accepted: 30 October 2019 / Published: 4 November 2019

Round 1

Reviewer 1 Report

Thank you for your paper. I suggest a number of things to consider before I believe this paper should be accepted. While I comment writing in English- I think an editor that is a native English speaker is required. There are definite articles missing and sentences are very convoluted so the reading flow is impacted.  In the abstract the country where the study took place should be mentioned. In the main paper, the kindergarten year and the context needs more explanation as we dont know how old the children are in Kindergarten- are they stand alone for instance in my country Kindergarten is part of the primary school.So to know a bit more about that would be good. The reference list is dated and needs revising. There is no theoretical framework. There are no ethical considerations- did you have ethical permissions from participants?  The instrument was developed in focus groups- what did that look like and how was that done? Was the instrument trialed or piloted? Did you define play at any time for the participants? 

I hope this helps and shows why I think at this stage the manuscript is not ready for acceptance.

Author Response

Please see the attachment.

Author Response File: Author Response.pdf

Reviewer 2 Report

The goal of the study is a little bit unclear, in the title it states that the study is about understanding children’s play in the context of kindergarten, however, it seems more the paper is about in the role of educators in setting the frame to children’s play, with respect to their personal paradigm and formal education. This is quite an interesting perspective and would make a fine contribute to the journal. 

 I found several weaknesses in the discussion, first of all the abstract  mainly focuses on the gained quantitative data, but I miss a few lines about why is this study important, both in terms of highlighting the specific scientific contribution and societal perspective regarding children’s education. 

At times references are simply stated as “researches” which makes the discussion a bit vague, the discussion would sound more precise if the names of authors would be mentioned. 

 The study seems to have been conducted in Croatia, this emerges later in the paper, while it would be great help for the reader to gain a clear contextualisation of the study since the introduction, explaining when and with which partners and for how long was the study conducted. 

 The introduction and literature review are generally fine, the texts discussed are of a reasonable amount for a journal article, however, the discussion is lacking in terms of identifying a specific knowledge gap in existing literature, regarding the specific contribution of the study. 

In the literature review, I find mainly a focus on children’s play with a marginal mention of adults’ involvement and how this impacts the children freedom of play. The educational perspective is instead not discussed, which is a bit strange being the paper submitted to a journal on education. It is sometimes a little ambiguous if the educational perspective of the paper refers to children’s education or educators’ education. 

This study would benefit from the definition of a theoretical framework defining more clearly the relation between play, role of educators and education, and it should be said clearly if the authors aims at contributing to the understanding of children’s or educators’ education.

Author Response

Please see the attachment.

Author Response File: Author Response.pdf

Reviewer 3 Report

I do not think this is a publishable article yet!

First of all the version I get is full of corrections in red and blue, which made it difficult to read.

Second, I suggest that some parts are cult out to make if more focussed, now it is about play, ICT (which by necessity does not have to be play) and children with special need). All three parts could be focus, but now it become to diverse and not depend in any of these fields. There is much research about ICT, that also shows how social it actually is, so I think this part in very superficial.

 

The background is all about play, but there is no standpoint about what kind of play it is here talked about.

 

There are also claims that I do not think is correct, like line 63, that children spend more time in preschool than at home??? It is simply impossible!

 

The whole section with Sample is impossible to read, could it be put into a table and delete what is not relevant, it is impossible to understand since it too detailed. Cut out what si not relevant. How large was the sample and how many answered the questionnaire?

 

Instrument: What does it mean that the data is analysed in focus groups. As it is written ow it sounds like there also have been observations of children’s play.

 

The tale is just impossible to present like this, cut out the relevant parts and leave the other to another article. It si not possible to understand, the author leave the interpretation to the reader.

Line 278-279 about assessment, what does this mean and why is it relevant to play?

Cut out about disabilities!!

I also wish there have been more nuanced writing about the use of toys???

 

There are some repetitions!

 

Can you really say that this is the teachers paradigm, or just the way they answer these questions?

There are some contradictions, in the background play si considered to be something all children do, but in the conclusions 344 -ff it is talked about as something the teacher have to teach?

The main idea about children’s play become hidden in ICT and disable children, and is disable children and children with special need the same?

Author Response

In this article, we provide an overview of the research findings on how educators understand children´s play and their personal role in the playing process. We updated the paper to include suggestions.

Reviewer

Comment and explanation

Moderate English changes required

A native English speaker, Dr Paulette Luff  (SFHEA, Principal Lecturer, Course Leader MA Early Childhood Education, ARU, Bishop Hall Lane, Chelmsford, CM1 1SQ, T: +44 (0) 1245 683544   |   Internal ext. 3544, aru.ac.uk) reviewed the article and made the corrections. His opinion is that the article is “very interesting”.

The version I get is full of corrections in red and blue, which made it difficult to read

Red were corrections according reviewer, blue were a native English speaker. Now, all the corrections are in red.

Can you really say that this is the teacher’s paradigm, or just the way they answer these questions?

Thank You. That is really about teacher´s opinions.

We changed the original title of the research article from Child´s Play - the Educator´s Paradigm to Children´s Play – the Educator´s Opinion. We focused on the educator´s opinions in relation to their education (the state and the level) and contextual conditions (place of work, founder of kindergarten).

Some parts are cut out to make if more focussed, now it is about play, ICT (which by necessity does not have to be play) and children with special need).   

We emphasized that the article is about teacher´s opinion of children´s play not as particular playing method....but as a reflection about play depending on the level of  the teacher’s education  and contextual conditions (place of work, founder of kindergarten). Children with disabilities and ICT are mentioned only in context of child’s play and educator´s interaction with all children in inclusive kindergartens.

The background is all about play, but there is no standpoint about what kind of play it is here talked about

There are also claims that I do not think is correct, like line 63, that children spend more time in preschool than at home??? It is simply impossible

The tesis that children are more in an Kindergaten (preschool institution) than in a family is  repeatedly emphasized Jasper Juu (which is cited as a reference). Even without citing the source, the logic is unfortunately clear. Children are in institution for up to 10 hours a day. It is justified to expect them to sleep 8-10 hours a day. Meaning thay are in the family for maximum of 4-6 hours a day. This assumption excludes all other activities.

The whole section with Sample is impossible to read, could it be put into a table and delete what is not relevant

We put samples of date into a table. The data are indicators for the representativeness of the samples. It is easier to follow the conclusion where all is explained.

What does it mean that the data is analysed in focus groups. As it is written it sounds like there also have been observations of children’s play

We explained how instrument was developed within the focus groups and verified through representativeness of samples. Just educator’s opinions on child’s play depending on their level of education and personal development.

Line 278-279 about assessment, what does this mean and why is it relevant to play?

We think that is important to differentiate teacher´s opinions according to the founder of kindergarten (religious or private). There is no available research that can be referenced.

 

I also wish there have been more nuanced writing about the use of toys???

These are teacher´s opinions and It´s justifiable to assume the importance of how teacher´s opinions correlate with their education and personal development.

The main idea about children’s play become hidden in ICT and disable children, and is disable children and children with special need the same?

We covered the difference in terms according education policy legislation in Croatia.

Round 2

Reviewer 3 Report

I have no further comments, the authors have made some changes and I think it can be accepted

only one minor question about the keywords, what does "children of early and preschool age" mean? Are not all children below school age preschool children? And since they do not include babies I think delete "of early and"

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