Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Deconstructing and reconstructing the unorthodox recipe of playwork
Author: Newstead, Michelle Dawn
ISNI:       0000 0004 7429 1568
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2018
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Full text unavailable from EThOS. Restricted access.
Access from Institution:
Playwork began in the adventure playgrounds set up in the UK just after the Second World War and is currently an officially recognised profession in the UK. Despite its growing international profile and established history, the playwork field is still unable to distinguish itself from other approaches to working with children. This inability to define and describe what is unique about playwork has created significant barriers to the development of the playwork profession over the last seventy years and poses a threat to the continued survival of the playwork field. This study takes a new approach to the age-old problem of a unique identity for playwork by treating it as a collective and historical problem. Inspired by Turner’s (1961, p.5) description of children being attracted by the “unorthodox recipe" of adventure playgrounds, this study set out to investigate whether any recipe of what it means to do playwork has ever been recorded in the playwork literature. Using Grounded Theory, 243 rare historical playwork primary sources were fragmented to identify key elements of playwork theory and practice. This deconstruction of the historical playwork primary sources rediscovered the lost philosophy of the adventure playground pioneers, and this was used to develop the P.A.R.S. (Playwork Action Research System) model of playwork practice. Conceptualised as a form of action research and constructed as a Venn diagram, this model is the first to define and describe what it means to do playwork as a unique and collective approach to working with children. The P.A.R.S. model provides a paradigm shift with which to define playwork as a unique form of practice within the wider children’s workforce by redefining the aim of playwork practice as compensating children for the presence of adults in their time and space, rather than providing and facilitating play.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available