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Although parents are active in social media the use of social media as a collaborative tool for parental learning about play is yet to be fully realised. Models for parental education including those that use social media, predominantly use top-down, deficit-based approaches to involving parents in learning about children's play. Increasing social media use by parents aligned with their participation in community playgroups suggests a powerful social situation for parental learning about play that is both collaborative and more connected to parents' life-worlds than traditional approaches. As an important first step to realising the pedagogical potential of social media for contributing to parental learning about play, this paper uses the socio-cultural concept of ‘learning activity’ to identify the nature of what parents are thinking about their children's play in community playgroup social media. The findings indicated that parents (N = 16) did have content knowledge of children's play-types and how these relate to learning. Importantly, the findings point to a transformational role for social media in parental education initiatives, which utilises the collaborative functionality of social media and situates parents positively as holding valuable knowledge that can be shared and extended upon with others via social media.


Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education

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Journal Article

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