Playground Visioning Tools

When a playground first opens, we encourage the school community to gather stakeholders to get a sense of how the space in already used. What’s already going on and who should we get involved? This Playground Vision Intake Sheet helps gather contacts and map out ways the playground’s already being used so that we can…

Play in Difficult Times

A few notes on the importance of play in difficult times: Play is essential to child development. All you super-parents out there working from home, home-schooling, and/or parenting under stress and isolation can rest easy that simply letting children play at home or (socially-distanced) at a park is contributing to their physical, social, cognitive, and…

How to Plant Seeds

There’s a bit of magical faith in planting a seed. It’s a simple and fairly reliable way to grow a plant, but every time a little stem and those first cotyledons or “seed leaves” push through the soil, I think “Wow! I can’t believe that worked!” If you requested seeds through our Annual Garden Survey,…

The Nature Journal

Is there anything more beautiful than the first almost lime-colored spring green that appears on the willow trees of New York City at the end of March? Playgrounds may be temporarily closed, but we can still take walks outside (with caution, masks, and social distancing), pass street trees and community gardens, and visit our neighborhood…

Trauma-Informed Resilient Schools

Greetings Beautiful School Communities, As we all adjust to our new normal amidst the global coronavirus pandemic, I’d like to share a resource offered by Starr Commonwealth on Trauma-Informed Resilient Schools Teacher Training. This online training is currently being offered free of charge. You can “purchase” it now for free using the coupon code noted,…

P.E. at Home or in a Park

We know that getting exercise can help us focus, reduces stress, and improves our health. The CDC recommends that children and adolescents ages 6 to 17 years do 60 minutes or more of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity daily. If you’re currently home schooling, here are a few free online resources for getting in P.E. time throughout…

COVID-19 Resources & Support

So many of our amazing programmatic partners have compiled resources to help communities find support while schools are closed, from securing meals to online teaching resources to resources about safety and COVID-19. We’ve compiled them here, and we’ll keep adding to the list. Thank you for all you do! From Wellness in the Schools¬†– COVID-19…

NYC Parks LIVE

Even from home, we can stay tuned into Spring through Live Broadcasts from NYC Park’s new Parks@Home site. Here’s a sampling of their programs: Join an NYC Parks Ranger for a scenic hike or nature activity, live every Tuesday. Have you visited every park in NYC? On Wednesdays, tune in for a live walk through…

Play:Ground NYC – Train as a Playworker

You may remember Play:Ground NYC’s amazing Playworkers from their presentations at our Annual Stewardship Workshops. You can currently sign-up for their Spring Playworker Training to learn about playwork with play:ground’s head playworker, Yoni Kallai.¬† The NYC Playgrounds Program would be happy to support the training through our mini-grant program with hopes that the attending teacher…

The Movement Creative

The Movement Creative is an amazing NYC-based parkour, movement, and games organization that we’ve been inviting to partner with our school communities. Although Parkour is often seen as an activity for the super fit and super bold YouTube sensations jumping from window ledges to building tops, I’ve loved seeing how their movement philosophy translates to…