Playcentre has been a unique early childhood service in Aotearoa/New Zealand for over 60 years, yet many parents in New Zealand do not know it exists and many people working in the early childhood sector have a lack of knowledge or misunderstanding about how it operates. Drawing on Playcentre texts (Densem and Chapman, 2000; Stover, 1997) and the authors' current involvement with Playcentre, this presentation outlines the beginnings of Playcentre and the concepts on which it was founded, such as family involvement where parents learn alongside their children, child-initiated play and mixed age sessions where children from birth to school-age interact together.
Fagan, T. J., & Manning, S. (2008). Playcentre: Free play radicals? In 16th Annual Conference of Australian Research in Early Childhood Education, Melbourne, Australia.