We can’t quite believe how many weeks we’ve all been at home under lockdown. Everyone has been doing an amazing job teaching remotely and homeschooling, as well as all the children working so hard from home and adapting to this strange new 'normal'.
Whilst the world is looking a little different, we wanted to use our expertise in the most helpful way possible and so over the past few weeks we’ve created and shared several home learning videos to help get children excited about going outside to play, whilst being creative, practising literacy and mathematics skills. These activities have included playground equipment designer challenges as well as learning how to measure and scale drawings, as well as tasks to get their brains active and working and outdoor challenges to keep the whole family moving.
As one headteacher told us: 'The video is lovely and something we could use in our school based critical key worker sessions, as we are always looking for sessions which pupils can complete from a social distanced space in school. They are also nice tasks that could be sent home as part of remote learning.'
We’ve collected them all together here, as well as sharing three of our favourite examples of equipment children have designed, using these resources, so far… if you’d like to send in your designs, please share them on our Facebook page, or email them to us at email@example.com.
The Playground Designer Challenge: EYFS and KS1 - Video 1
Think about your local park or favourite playground. List your favourite things to play on in the playground. How could these products be improved? Draw a picture to fill the whole page of a new piece of equipment that improves your favourite. Add in new features, colours and landscaping. Think about three words you’d use to describe it now.
The Playground Designer Challenge: KS2 - Video 2
Think about your local park or favourite playground. List your favourite things to play on in the playground. Divide your page into four. Use your imaginations to come up with a new piece of playground equipment - something really new. Think about combining some of the items on the list. What words would you use to describe your new piece of playground equipment? Use each of the four sections on your page to come up with even more designs.
KS2 extension activity - measuring and scaling drawings - Video 3
If you've completed our first playground designer challenge for KS2 children, have a go at our extension activity all about how to measure a space and draw a scale plan. It's a tricky one so you may need an adult to help you, but it's lots of fun - you could design your very own playground in your back garden, at school, or inside your living room!
A-Z warm up - Video 4
Here is one of Ben's warm up activities, perfect for completing before a creative activity of any kind - warm up your brain, your body and get creative!
Brain gym warm up - Video 5
This is a really popular brain gym exercise led by our very own Ben - warm up both sides of your brain and warm up your fingers, hands and arms before doing any creative activity. It's a perfect starter before taking on one of our playground designer challenges but it can be used before any creative activity and it's great for including in planning for home learning during the coronavirus pandemic.
Outdoor challenges - Download our PDF here
We’ve created two simple challenges for you to complete outdoors to keep both your mind and your body active whilst getting a bit of fresh air. These are great to do whilst you are out on your daily walk. Why not get your family to join in too?
If you’d like to see some examples, here are three of our favourite designs…
Max Quinn age 6 has designed this swing, with a large enough seat for 6 children and attached by springs so it bounces as it swings.
Michael Hutton is 7 ½ years old and has designed a “Ball Archery Wheel” game, where you spin the wheel and try to throw 5 tennis balls into the triangles as it’s turning. The triangles are different sizes so it gives different levels of difficulty. There are nets behind the triangles to catch the balls so they don’t bounce off all over the playground and the player to score the highest points is the winner. Michael loves going to the park to play with all his friends after school and is really missing not being able to do this at the present time.
Ruby Evans is 7 years old. She has called her design Unicorn Park. She designed different size swings based on the age of the child and a swirly-whirly slide. Her monkey bars also had smaller holes for smaller children. Our favourite part was the sofa seesaw.