Coming Together Through Stories

In our years working with communities to design and program their playgrounds, we’ve heard countless stories emerge around the life of a school, neighborhood, and playground. Each playground is its own little universe. We know that people heal, connect, and learn from community and generational stories, and we love finding ways to uplift and foster…

Seeding Civic Engagement through your Playground

“Research suggests that youth learn to be political by forming attachments to their communities and accessing opportunities in the settings of their everyday lives.” Wray-Lake, Laura, “How Do Young People Become Politically Engaged?” Child Development Perspectives By being involved in the programs and spaces of their communities, kids feel more connected and empowered to be active in political life…

Reading in the Garden

One great use of your playground’s garden and gazebo is to cozy up with a good book or lead storytime, either as part of classroom reading time or at your leisure on the weekend. Here are a few great resources that can help support literacy in the playground: Tinkergarten shared a List of 24 Books…

Teaching Outside

As schools plan for the many possibilities for what teaching might look like in the Fall of 2020, we’re wondering if now’s the time to consider utilizing the playground, garden, and outdoor classroom in a more systematic way to support teaching. Green Schoolyard America is working with a cohort of educators to consider the details…

Nature’s Role in Mitigating Stress and Racial Inequities

I loved this interview with Dr. Gail Christopher, a past keynote speaker for the Children & Nature Network. I’ve  always been most driven by what she sees as the #1 role of parks, nature, and play: mitigating stress in the lives of children so that they can be freed up for healthy development. There’s also…

Teach for Justice

As you plan for Fall 2020, we want to pass along some resources for support around social justice education. We’re hearing more and more discourse around investing in community-based solutions to community challenges, and we think playgrounds, school gardens, and community programming can be a big part of envisioning this new investment. Here are some…

Schools That Can – Fall 2020

Praise to all teachers! We’re amazed with how all NYC educators have navigated all that’s been asked of them over the last few months. When we shared the training on Trauma-informed Teaching, we had the impacts of Covid-19 in mind. Of course, students and school communities have been dealing with trauma-inducing systemic racism manifest in…