In St. Vincent’s, we set-aside up to an hour a day for play based learning using the Aistear method. Children learn best through play and it is an important part of their early development. Engaging in play benefits the children’s well being, it develops their sense of identity and belonging and it is a way that they can communicate and explore. During our Aistear hour, children might design a block of flats with wooden bricks, they get to play out different real life situations like; the doctor's surgery or supermarket through role play, or they may create their own robot with junk art – the opportunities are endless! We use this method of teaching in all classes from Junior Infants to First and it is often the time of day our children look forward to most.