A Whole New Playground

We all know, this year, Chickering has collected some PreSchoolers to join our ranks. Now they are abiding by a state mandate by adding a playground to the school for the PreSchoolers! We are here to ask the Assistant Principal, Dr. Reinemann all about this new playground and to see if other students will be able to access it, too.

The first question I asked Dr.Reineman is why do the preschoolers need their own playground. She answered with multiple reasons:

  1. Children are smaller  [3 to 5 year olds]
  2. Cannot use regular playground because the equipment too big
  3. Need to be near their classroom but also near the other playgrounds

I asked if only the preschoolers would be able to use it, and if so why. She said that during the school day, only the preschoolers can use it but it would be open to the community after school and weekends. The equipment will be too small for the majority of the school population and there is some concern that the equipment may be broken if used by the older students.

Who designed the new playground? Dr. Reinemann said that we have been working with Nancy White, who is the school’s playground consultant, and she is helping us figure out what the playground will need for the preschoolers.

I also asked if we gave the designer, Nancy White, any information about what we wanted for the playground or did we let her suggest it. The answer is, we told her what we wanted for the playground and she helped us with locate it and design its location on the playground.
Image of proposed playground showing balance beam, tunnel and chin-up bar.What equipment will be on the playground?  I received quite an interesting answer. According to Dr. Reinemann, we are using the existing space to put in multiple equipment, of which one is a very interesting spider swing.I wish we were able to use it! At the May 16th School Committee meeting, Dr. Reinemann updated the committee. A new rubber base will be installed under the whole preschool playground. The existing equipment will be replaced and a multi-user swing will be installed. The total size is 27’ X 32’.It will be surrounded by a 4-foot high fence with two gates, each on opposite sides.

I wondered how long they’ve been planning this. Apparently they have been planning this since last summer and have actually wanted to begin since the Preschool was began in September.

What is the timeline for the new playground? Apparently They have begun working on the new playground, as of June 1st and hopefully it will be finished before school starts in August. The location of the new playground will replace an existing small-scale playground on the side of the school which houses the youngest children.

Since this the process of creating the new Preschool playground has begun, there may be more updates as it progresses. I hope you enjoyed my report.

Reported by Peter Johnston.

UPDATE – June 17, 2016

The new PreSchool Playground is almost complete … ahead of schedule! We are waiting for the new swing and fence.  Here is how it looks today!

Picture of some of the new preschool playground equipment ... tunnel and bridge.

New base has been installed along with the bridge and tunnel.





New balance beam with stepping seats, stones, to the tunnel.

PreSchool playground showing the balance beam and stepping 'stones' to tunnel.






Preschool Playground and two red posts, which will house the new swing.

Posts for the new swing. Preschool playground will be surrounded by a fence with a gate on opposite sides.


The Perfect Playground

The playground at our school has just had some fabulous renovations of our new playground equipment. Over the summer the following equipment was installed: 2 basketball hoops at different heights, four-square outlines, spiral slide, DNA Strand, stage, Plinko, painted map of the United States, chess and checkers.

We were curious about students’ opinions, so we asked them a couple of  questions. We wondered if they had a favorite. The DNA Strand is one of the two Spiral monkey bars shaped like a DNA Strand.top choices.  Some students shared “ It goes in different motions; you get to twist and turn and do crazy things,” “different from monkey bars,” and “ fun to climb upside down.”

The second  popular apparatus is the Plinko.Plinko - multiple funnels containing multiple holes into which balls are thrown.  “It is an unique piece of equipment; you never know where the balls will come out,” “every kid gets a chance to throw the ball,” and “reminds him of basketball.”

We were also curious to know if something was missing from the playground. Most of the students we interviewed thought the playground was complete; they couldn’t think of anything to improve the playground. But one student To forts with a bridge connecting them.suggested the bridge that connects the two forts … bounce! Another student suggested more opportunities to play on the upper field: soccer, tag football, and basketball.2 Basketball hoops at different heights for younger students.

We all love to play on the playground now that we have new equipment, which makes it even more entertaining at recess.

Reported by: Evan and Tommy L.