Workshop - designing outdoor spaces
When it comes to the outdoor space and playground, the options are endless! Perhaps the following questions sound familiar: Which play equipment should I choose? Which materials fit best? How can we create an outdoor space that provides play and learning opportunities for both young and older children? And what about the children with special needs, how do we take their needs taken into account when designing a playground?
To answer all these questions, we offer to hold a workshop that both pupils and teachers can attend. Our experience is that when pupils are involved, they feel greater ownership and responsibility for the outdoor area.
How do we organise a workshop?
A group of pupils, preferably from several year groups, attend a workshop at the school. We often see that it is the pupils from the student council who participate, and we have good experiences of groups of 10 to 12 people in size.
We recommend that pupils from all age groups participate.
The workshop is shaped like a 'funnel'. First, pupils work individually on questions such as:
- What is missing for you? Which sport do you like best?
- Do you need sun, wind or shelter?
- What input do you have from your other classmates?
Pupils like to draw and write in this phase. Then the pupils work together in pairs. And finally, pupils work together in larger groups. Running alongside this will be an inspirational presentation, and pictures are handed out showing products and moods.
Based on the pictures and the thoughts the pupils have made, the group jointly creates a collage that reflects their ideas, thoughts, needs and wishes.
Finally, the pupils present the collages to each other. During the process, we use the 'workshop game', which is a set of picture cards to help clarify any wishes they have for the playground.
How we process the material
We review the group's ideas and wishes, and we try to integrate these into the project. Sometimes the pupils' presentation is quite specific, such as the desire for a specific product, e.g. a swing. Other times, input to us is more subtle like a mood, a feeling, a need, warmth, or a fun idea.
We analyse the input for the underlying thoughts, and we translate the thoughts into concrete ideas for space design. All input is included as part of the design language, the colours, the outline of the room etc.
Book a workshop
You can always book a workshop at