This year at Creasys we planned to have a low-key Playday, however as with most ‘events’ after a few conversations with the children, the activities that were being asked for became quite a bit more. We started with the idea of doing what we do on a daily basis…providing play opportunities, but a slightly bigger scale. However the children soon began to sound out ideas and became excited by the day. Many of the children wrote lists of stuff that they wanted for this ‘special’ day of play…Shaving foam, bouncy castles, waterslides, big boxes, and walls where they could graffiti.
The regulars planned their day and invited many of their friends, and family. The children made posters and proudly distributed them to the local community looking to show off their space, but as with any day at a playground we couldn’t predict what may happen throughout the day.
The day came and the ‘regulars’ arrived bright and early (earlier than the playworkers in fact) to get set up, although for most it was their way of getting into the playground earlier than the ‘proper’ opening times. The resources that we sourced for them led on from other games and moments they had been engaging in the previously couple of weeks, and fed back to what they had asked for. The children and family centre were invited to come along as an offering for parents with young siblings, knowing that it would offer a different element to the day.
Over the day around 350 people came and went, playing along the way. Everyone appeared to have a good time, not fussing over the state of clothing or if they had stopped for lunch. There is just something about National Playday that brings everyone together and makes everything acceptable to the outside eye. Parents giggled as playworkers got pounced upon by groups of children with cans of shaving foam, teenage boys who wouldn’t normally be seen doing arts and crafts, painted large card with their graffiti ‘S’s, and the children gained an extra two hours at the playground. The day offered something for everyone, it was a day where I thanked the children and staff for supporting me in making it possible.