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play by philippa

a blog about all things play

Tag Archives: Play

Earlier this year I made an effort to visit the Kolle 37 Adventure Playground in the district of Prenzlauer Berg while in Berlin. After speaking with one of the ‘educators’ I learnt the Playground was founded over 20 years ago with children free to roam in and out of the playground when they please. ‘Educators’ maintain the playground’s safety and encourage children’s development in play and experimentation by providing interesting spaces inspired by the elements, such as the supervised fire, the adventure fort, the sand pit, the water fountain and “The Hut”.

The Kolle 37 Adventure Playground is modeled on 5 Basic Key Principles: 1. Creates Conditions, 2. Openness, 3. Care, 4. Participation and 5. Community Orientation.

What I liked best about the playground is that the Children or Adolescent users of the space are not viewed “as objects of adult guardianship, but as equal human beings” with an opportunity to determine their own play experience.


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I was recently told about these extraordinary ‘travelling rings’ at Riverside Park, New York and after a bit of research I also found images and videos of these swings from Muscle Beach, Santa Monica. These athletes or ‘flyers’ make swinging on metal hanging rings from one end to another look effortless. There are some great videos of the ‘travelling rings’ being used on youtube, with kids as young as 5 having a go! This is a great example of fitness disguised as play and shows that you are never too old for a swing. I wonder could these ever work in Australia?

Images linked to sources.

 For more information about travelling rings visit the

 Ring Flyers website.

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I recently visited  the Manly Vale Community Garden on Sydney’s Northern Beaches and really loved it. There was a true spirit to the garden and the involvement and commitment by the community could be seen in the beautifully kept veggie patches and the small orchard. Children were playing on all play equipment pieces especially liking the rockers and the double mound slide. I personally enjoyed the basket swing and just overall relaxing in the space.

The Manly Vale Community Garden blog has further information about the garden, becoming a member, as well classes and events on organic gardening. So get gardening, oh and playing of course!

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Now and then I hope to post pictures of playgrounds I have visited from home as well as from abroad. I really enjoyed seeing different playgrounds overseas and I think it will be really interesting to compare them to ones at home.

I visited Stockholm in July 2011, and particularly loved this playground that I stumbled on in Vasastaden. Vasaparken itself was a fantastic park, full of endless activities with putt putt golf, a cafe and a playing field that turns into a an Ice Rink in Winter. I think the playground is beginning to show its age especially in the rubber wetpour, but the modern and traditional play elements still allow it to be a really functional and playful space.


The Landscpae Architects Grontmij won the prestigious Sienapriset award for the park in 2008.

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For the first post for play by philippa, I am going to start by posting a play structure that everyone just looks at in awe and says “Man! I wish I had that growing up.” Designed by Berlin-based ANNABAU Architektur und Landschaft . The entire structure composes of two elements. The outer element is a ‘multi-layered loop’ of suspended net and climbing elements supported by continuous stainless steel piping. The inner element is an arrangement of Rubber mounds allowing play of all types.

You can view more photos and plans of the structure at ANNABAU Architektur und Landschaft.

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