How Indoor Play Areas are Helping to Bring American Malls Back to Life

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To trace the origins of the iconic American shopping mall, one must travel all the way back to the mid-twentieth century. It was in 1956 that Southdale, the first enclosed shopping space in the United States, opened outside of Minneapolis. Over the next fifty years, roughly 1,500 similar structures were built across the country, and… Read more »

Six Ways Parents Can Support Their Children on the Playground

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Any parent who has ever witnessed a child’s first steps knows what the glow of fresh independence looks like. It is a messy, non-linear process, as the new toddler begins teetering around, falling, and getting up again. As parents, it can be simultaneously splendid and terrifying to watch, and it is a practice they’ll have… Read more »

Our Top 5 Playground Related Blogs

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San Jose Rotary Playground, Adult Playgrounds, Intergenerational Playgrounds, Playground Equipment

A Small Collection of Resources on the Importance of Quality Playground Equipment and Design     One of the more wonderful aspects of play is how it can foster a sense of community. It is no accident that many of our first friendships were formed while using playground equipment. And just on the edges of that play… Read more »

Honoring Play Enthusiasts: Friedrich Froebel Part 1, Gift Play

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Friedrich Froebel is the “father” of the kindergarten concept. Froebel studied the natural sciences as well as architecture and had a profound understanding of the interconnectedness between the two disciplines. Under the direction of Anton Gruener, headmaster of the Pestalozzian Frankfurt Model School and in reflection of the teachings of Johann Henrich Pestalozzi, Froebel became a… Read more »

Happy Holidays and a Joyous New Year!

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Our Candy Park and Playground by Laura Every year I create a gingerbread village and this year I was inspired by the Conlastic playground equipment and decided to recreate some pieces with candy.  The Conlastic PlayPoints are made from gum paste, marzipan, gum balls and edible metallic glitter dust. You will see the Spaghettini for the gingerbread… Read more »

Honoring Play Enthusiasts: The Fantastic Art Play of Isamu Noguchi

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Recently I stumbled upon an article in the LA Landscape blog reviewing the Playa Vista Central Park.  I noticed that they commented on the playground area designed by the Office of James Burnett as: “Contemporary play area recalls a Noguchi playground”. I admit that I wasn’t familiar with Noguchi so I decided to look him… Read more »

The Dancers

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Lately, we’ve been talking a lot about the importance of movement in play on the playground. Last year,  Anna wrote about movement playing a large role in learning and coordination development, read the article again here if you would like a refresher.  Or read JC Boushh’s article about designing playgrounds that encourage different kinds of… Read more »

Why do Playgrounds Get Boring?

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There was a park and a small playground behind the house that I grew up in.  It was a typical playground of the 60’s and 70’s:  Swings, see saws, and a free-standing slide.  I loved this playground; I spent endless hours swinging on the swings when the swings weren’t twisted around the top crosser (good… Read more »