6) Planning and designing new play equipment
Talk about ideas for the theme of the play equipment. If designing for toddlers, might the equipment emulate flowers, trees, animals, insects and birds that live in the park? For older children, might their equipment offer challenge and adventure, based on natural and man-made structures within the park? Or, the designs could have a historical feel, reflecting some of the historic features in the park. Look at designs of new playgrounds and images from the Resource files to inspire ideas.
Students should also use their own research about how children play and what parents might want to develop creative solutions. They can also use the internet, catalogues from play equipment suppliers or images in designs and diagrams , and the downloadable blueprints and plans at the bottom of this section, to stimulate ideas.
Consider equipment that:
- is static
- is designed to move
- requires interaction – paired or as a group
- encourages creativity
- develops problem-solving
- stimulates imagination
- challenges – at different levels
- creates sound
- children can hide inside or to chase through
Stress to students the need to make their designs as inclusive as possible so that children with limited mobility can use the play equipment, not just by themselves, but with more mobile children. Similarly, students should also consider provision for children with visual impairment.
Plans and blueprints: