A reggio inspired jewish school
You can take a video tour of this play space here.
The entry to this play space is along an accessible concrete path, stamped and imprinted with Jewish symbols and quotes. The path leads children and their adults to a playful gate with peek holes into the space. An accessible path loops around and through the space. The 100 leaf prints in the surface invite counting, matching, and all sorts of movement – hopping, jumping, and following serpentine routes
A grassy lawn for games, running, and relaxing is bordered with a whimsical curvy topped fence that includes a wide waving window for watching parents and teachers come and go from the parking lot. In the center of the looping path the active play area includes a fallen tree for climbing, balancing and even jumping off into the soft wood chips covering the ground in this area. A constructed hill inset with stumps and boulders offers options for differing levels of challenge in ascending the hill. Two children can slide down the embankment slide side by side. A stone cave set into the hillside provides a child-sized enclosure just big enough for one or two.
The generously sized sand play area is enclosed with logs and stumps that provide a place to sit or a work surface for sand play. Additional horizontal work surfaces –a log table and a sand kitchen — and a vertical sand play wall for pouring mounted on the fence add play value and different motor experiences. Shade sails provide instant shade in this area, while trees planted throughout the space will be a long-term investment in shade.
A mosaic stream meanders from its source on the side of the hill, down, under a bridge in the texture path to end in the sand area. Children can send water from a pump down the stream. Even when dry, the colorful mosaic stream is a sparkly focal point in the space.
An open space for building is adjacent to the sand area and includes a structure that invites children to add sticks to create an enclosed space. Bins hold a variety of loose parts: tree cookies of many sizes, sticks, boards, and stackable stones which give children the opportunity to change their space. This creates a sense of control and ownership of the space that supports healthy self-esteem, and offers opportunities for problem solving, and cooperation.
Large in-the-ground musical instruments tuned to a pentatonic scale allow children to make beautiful music in the out-of-doors.
“We started with a design charette, and it was amazing. It really brought our community together so everyone understood the purpose and helped every step of the way. We now have a playspace where all our kids – toddlers and preschoolers – can play together. I can’t tell you how much the kids have been enjoying the space. They have been out there in the sun, rain, snow, and everything in between and it is just amazing.”