Building shards artefacts and skeleton models are arranged beneath the soft

Building shards artefacts and skeleton models are

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Building shards, artefacts and skeleton models are arranged beneath the soft earth. Children form expedition teams to search out and discover the new elements. The Ritter Park Playground works because it balances danger and safety while providing ‘safe’ place for just sitting with parents or thinking. Innovative Play Structures Research Project August, 2001 Page 66
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Playground of the Mind - England Bill Lucas, one of Britain’s most prominent childhood advocates, begins his argument for the encouragement of imagination in day to day play, like this: Picture this: a small group of children tangling together among living willow, which sprawls along a bank in a school in northeast England. They are just starting work on a willow sculpture destined to become a friendly dragon. Or …teenagers under a grey London sky remarking on the shoal of colourful fish which have mysteriously swum onto the outside wall of their gymnasium. Each of these is an example of an outdoor arts and entertainment initiative where a number of significant factors have come together to inspire children to dream impossible dreams. Children have worked with local artists to understand the empowering process of transforming an imagined object or space into reality. Examples of the amazing playground elements, created by this process, include the Caterpillar Trellis at Victoria Park School in Bristol, the London St. Orleans School Dragon, the Gear Sculpture Wall at St. Werburghs Primary School, and the Water Sculpture at a playground in Aipenham, Bristol. These installations teach children other things as well. They make real and tactile the ideas of scale, conflict, time, change and impermanence. Innovative Play Structures Research Project August, 2001 Page 67
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Hellings Street Urban Park - London, England At Hellings Street Urban Park standard and non-standard hard landscape materials are organized to act in unexpected ways that trigger questions and a need to explore. The entire site is designed to encourage children’s understanding of process. Two relatively flat paved areas seem to collide in the centre of the playground where, just like tectonic plates, they are pushed into faults, folds and mounds. Different play activity zones peek out of this surface at various heights and locations suggesting the ides of layering and stratification found both in the environment and in human life. The finishes and materials that detail this playground also peak interest and investigation. Hard concrete, soft woods to carve on and rubbery, colourful resilient surfacing of varying depths combined with vertical pickets, meshes and arbours to create changing patterns of colour and motion. The playground is a collage of play zones, jutting and melding into each other. From the formal jackpine bosque entrance, to the star climbing area and rock garden, to the rubber hills, and finally the basketball court, the child is encouraged to experiment with the idea of voyage and change.
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