This Fall, we were so pleased to have 25 teachers, custodians, and administrators come out to our 2015 Playgrounds Stewardship Workshop. We know that the true experts on engaging students in the NYC Playground Program’s schoolyards, planning community events, and troubleshooting maintenance issues are the amazing educators and staff on the ground everyday.
One of the requests we got from the stewardship workshop was that we create this blog. So, Voila! We hope this will serve as a resource, networking tool, and bulletin for you and your playground community. Feel free to comment, share, and offer suggestions of things you’d like to see as we go along.
Here’s the first of many highlights from our stewardship event:
PS 164’s Spring Green Festival
Superstar teacher Taura McMeekin shared the grassroots planning process that got hundreds of students and parents out for PS 164’s “Spring Green Festival”.
Some tips that worked for Taura:
- Have staff sign up far in advance to lead an activity or event that they care about. Events here included: Hula-hooping, water relay race, recycling game, planting in the garden, crafting in the cafeteria, self-esteem station, mural painting, and a raffle table.
- Start the event with an arts program where the kids perform and sell $1 tickets for entry . This seemed to be VERY effective in getting all the families to attend. The auditorium was packed! (Stay tuned for a post on how Taura’s class worked with the incredible “Story Laurie“).
- Hold your event during a weekend to get more families to attend.
- Apply for an NYC Playgrounds Program mini- stewardship grant. (Deadline: February 15, 2016) We’d love to help fund an event that brings community into your schoolyard!