Come and Play!

1 July 2011 · 0 comments

in Outdoor Play, Play Resources

Today is the first day of summer holidays for most children in NE Scotland. This means lots of fun and free time! Earlier this week I was giving a keynote presentation and workshop at the Aberdeen Play Forum Play Seminar. Here I was also lucky enough to see the presentation by Soozy Lai, a play development worker about the local “Come and Play” project which has been started thanks to funding from the Go Play fund.

“Come and Play” is a simple project which involves developing two greenspace areas within Aberdeen City to become:

“safe and inviting natural spaces for local children to play freely. Soozy runs sessions with children and their parents or carers providing support for both children and adults to take ownership and make use of their outdoor spaces for free play”.

Through working with the local schools, the children know when she is coming and where she will be.

The simplicity of the toys Soozy brings along is wonderful. They are low cost and often made from recycled materials such as discarded sheets and other materials for den building…

She uses string and these recycled pegs which claim to withstand a cyclone!!!

She is running out of yogurt pots as making talking telephones from pots and string is a hugely popular activity. Remember to pull the string tight so you can listen to another person talking into the other pot…

Another favourite toy is inserting a bouncy ball in an old sock for swinging, bouncing games off walls and generally throwing about…

The biggest consumable item Soozy uses is chalk. She is considering making her own from Plaster of Paris

Soozy’s net bag simply has bits and pieces in it such a short lengths of rope, string, ribbons and anything else that turns up…

I rather liked this recycled toy. The children cut open a milk carton, seal the edges with masking tape and attach string to the handle. At the other end of the string is a ball. The challenge is to catch the ball in the carton…I bet you remember similar toys.

I like the idea of children making their toys to entertain themselves. There’s something pleasantly refreshing about this in today’s world of “stuff”where more is considered better. Yet so often creativity and imagination come into their own in situations where less “stuff” becomes… well more… Hmm.

Please let me know of any other ideas you may have for recycling household items into toys.

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