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Playground Safety Post

Why Cant we be Friends?

It is that time of year - school is in session!  A new school year means a year full of learning, growing, and making friends while playing on the playground. Friends are a huge part of a child’s life. Belonging to a group or having a friend helps kids gain self-esteem and teaches them how to relate to others.

Slyde hanging out with friends.

With Playground Safety Week approaching (April 25th - 29nd), you will be able to use this newsletter to help you get started on your plans! Getting back to the basics is always a good way to start.

Ask yourself a few questions: Does your play area have safety surfacing? Does your playground have any protruding objects or strangulation risks? Play is a very important part of a child's development, and making sure it is safe is not only important, but also adds to the fun. 

Does your hair get tangled when your comb gets caught in it? Maybe you were fishing and your fishing line got tangled? Have you ever run through a bush and gotten caught in the branches?

There is the danger your clothes or part of your body getting caught on playground equipment, and these dangers are called entanglements (en.tan'gle.ments).

Jumping, climbing, sliding, laughing, giggling, swinging and running are all things children like to do. Usually they do these things outside where moving their bodies and using outdoor voices are expected and encouraged by grown-ups.

Maybe you remember a time you were outside doing some of these things on a playground in your backyard or at your school? Use your imagination to remember what the playground looked like. Did the playground have swings, slides, or climbing rocks? Were you there with a friend, a brother, or a sister? 

As you may all know, October was Bully Prevention Month. If you did not participate last month, it is never too late to implement bully prevention in your classroom, home, or anywhere with children under your care. Bullying is a major problem in this world, and it does not just start with children. In my opinion, most of the time children learn bullying from somewhere. Adults can be just as big of a bully as a child can. And, it needs to stop somewhere; so why not make it stop with you?

Being a parent can be very busy and chaotic at most times; the more children you have the crazier things can get. Trying to schedule every moment of your child's day can be helpful when trying to keep them on task or accomplish daily routines. Being the person and parent that I am scheduling is my life. My gal has nap time, bedtime, and other hygienic routines; I feel these are important for her stability. Although I am all about routines I am also very passionate about imaginary free play. Growing up with five siblings free play was all we had.

When you think back to your childhood what was your fondest memory? Do you remember where you were? Or who you were with? Most of the memories I have include my sister and playing outside. Being outside was the best part of our day. Getting to run around free and use our imagination was our favorite thing to do together when we weren't fighting with each other. It gave us an opportunity to pretend to be someone else in an imaginary place in our own backyard.

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