Hi Readers! This is just a beyond-belief great playground idea:[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqi1KyJJeKg]
As simple as it gets. As fun as it gets. And (if we must justify the idea of kids doing things on their own) as developmentally rich as it gets.
Watch it and weep — with joy for the kids with this kind of recess, with sadness for those who never get to do anything this free-form with THEIR friends. As the narators on the video say, “Children who are happier and engaged in play have a better experience in school.” This kind of “mixed-age, mixed gender” creative fun results in, “increased critical skills development.” Through open-ended play kids learn “team work, negotiation, risk management, conflict resolution, problem-solving.” They have fewer playground disputes because they’re busy having fun! All of which adds up to “Happier, engaged students.”
Engaged students are GOOD students. Teachers! Principals! Superintendents! Why not substitute a bit of test prep for a bit more junkyard recess time? It’s such a SIMPLE thing that can change the school day SO MUCH! (And thanks to Tim Gill for sending it along!) — L.