Playsa Online Guide

Based on the comprehensive initiative launched by the Department of Basic Education (DBE) in partnership with UNICEF, the LEGO Foundation, and Cotlands, the PlaySA (P.L.A.Y.) certificate represents a significant advancement in early childhood education in South Africa. Here’s a detailed guide on the PlaySA certificate and answers to frequently asked questions about it:

About PlaySA Certificate

The PlaySA Certificate, under the banner of “Powerful Learning Around You (P.L.A.Y.)”, is an innovative, free in-service training course for Early Childhood Development (ECD) practitioners, Grade R educators, and Grade 1 to 3 educators. Accredited by the South African Council of Educators (SACE), it complements existing formal training, offering a play-based approach to learning, crucial for the development of mathematical, language, creative, and solution-oriented skills in children from birth to nine years old.

Key Objectives

  • Enhance Early Learning: Focus on play-based learning to enhance cognitive, emotional, social, and creative skills among children.
  • Professional Development: Provide educators and practitioners with a robust training program that includes theory, practice, and assessment, culminating in SACE-accredited certification.
  • Broad Reach: Aim to train 42,000 ECD practitioners, 23,000 Grade R educators, and 85,000 Grade 1 to 3 educators over two years.

Enrollment and Training Process

  1. Online Registration: Available through any mobile device or computer via
  2. Orientation: A five-hour face-to-face session, utilizing resources such as Teacher Development Centres.
  3. Online Training: Includes videos, activities, and additional resources, focusing on infusing play-based learning principles into teaching.

Certification and Benefits

  • SACE Accredited: The certificate is recognized by SACE, offering 15 CPD points towards continuing professional development.
  • Practical Learning: Encourages resourcefulness and creativity, allowing practitioners to develop educational materials cost-effectively.
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  1. Is ECD free in South Africa?
    ECD services vary in cost across different providers. Government and NGO-run programs may offer free or subsidized services.
  2. Is PlaySA certificate accredited?
    Yes, the PlaySA certificate is accredited by SACE, offering formal recognition and professional development points.
  3. Can I teach Grade R with PlaySA certificate?
    The PlaySA certificate enhances your qualifications for teaching Grade R, focusing on play-based learning, although specific teaching positions may require additional qualifications.
  4. Can I study ECD online?
    Yes, the PlaySA program offers an online training component that allows you to study ECD principles and play-based learning methods online.
  5. Can I teach Grade R with ECD Level 5 certificate?
    Yes, an ECD Level 5 certificate is typically recognized for teaching Grade R in South Africa, subject to the requirements of the employing body.
  6. How much do ECD teachers earn per month?
    Salaries for ECD teachers can vary widely based on location, type of institution, and experience. Specific salary details should be sought from potential employers or industry surveys.

The PlaySA certificate program represents a landmark initiative in South Africa’s educational landscape, focusing on the critical role of play in early childhood development. By embracing this innovative approach, educators and practitioners are not only enhancing their professional skills but also significantly contributing to the holistic development of children, laying a solid foundation for their future learning and success.

For additional information or to register, practitioners and educators are encouraged to visit the official website at or contact via e-mail at