Design elements including a new sandpit, balance beams and vestibular activities, self directed rest day bench, reflexology water stones, reclaimed timber logs and a hand water pump for experimental diversity are just a few of the features of the new playground. A small fruit and vegetable garden has also been included so the children will understand where food comes from, and learn about healthy eating through nature play.
Centre Director Ms Nadia Woods said the children loved their new natural playground, which is full of hidden surprises and opportunities for young learners to interact closely with nature.
‘Natural outdoor environments produce positive physiological and psychological responses, including reduced stress, and increased feelings of wellbeing. At Brighton Playroom, environmental learning starts at an early age with hands on experience in nature. Through autonomous, self-directed play within the natural world, children form an affection and concern for nature, building their empathy and appreciation for the natural world and environment as they grow into adulthood’.
Bayside City Council Mayor Laurence Evans said he was delighted that Council was able to contribute to funding the design and installation of the new nature-based, interactive outdoor play area at Brighton Playroom.
“The playground fits perfectly into its natural surroundings and children will have hours of enjoyment climbing the rocks and splashing around in the water,” Cr Evans said.
“The playground is all the more commendable because it effectively integrates with the adjacent Council playground located next to the Playhouse.
“We want children to feel connected to nature and not be afraid of getting their hands dirty, and this play space achieves just that.”
“Brighton Playroom provides a valuable occasional care service and fosters important social connections for youngsters and their parents.”
It’s estimated that only 35% of children today are playing and exploring in outdoor playgrounds and this new oasis will serve an important educational purpose to teach sustainability, horticultural practices and native species to children of Bayside. Ms Woods said Brighton Playroom wanted to thank Bayside City Council for the generous grant to build the new playground, and Jenn Reed from Urban Discovery Landscape, for expertly bringing its vision to life.