Hunters Bar Infant School

13 October, 2006

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As part of an overall strategy to re-create the outdoor play spaces for the children at Hunters Bar Infant School, this Live Project intends to create a series of devices to help include the children in the design process. Due to the level of awarenss of a childs surrounding being extremely limited, such devices need to increase this awareness to then begin to encourage a process of relfection to draw out design proposals.

However, the term ‘devices’ is an unnecessarily architectural term for what the group are trying to do. The first ‘device’ was a play in which King Bertiys magical treasure had disappeared, and the children needed to find it! By looking for the treasure and then describing where they found it, the children could begin to think about the spaces around them. The treasure was then used in a variety of other games to help think about what changes could be made to the play areas to make them better.

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The intention of the groups work is to empower the children to take a propositional role in the re-designing of their play spaces, which will encourage a futuer sense of ownership within the space.

Please see the comments section for updates to how the project progresses, and please feel free to add your own comments on what the group are up to…

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2 Responses to “Hunters Bar Infant School”

  1. Hunters Bar Live Project Team Says:

    An update on the sessions held at Hunters Bar Infant School to date:

    Workshop One – Wednesday 11th October 2006 (Foundation Year)

    Brief Description

    Session One

    Introduced ourselves to the children and did a small play featuring King Bertie. Through the story we introduced the idea of the lost treasure and detectives who were going to find it. We emphasised that we needed the children to help us. The children went to find the treasure in a different classroom (this was initially to be outside but was rained off). We split into three groups depending on the colour of their treasure and discussed where they had found the treasure and asked them to describe it. The yellow group drew a big picture of where they had found it. The red group re-hid their treasure and we had to find it. The blue group started to make shapes on the classroom floor using the treasure.

    Playtime

    We went out and interacted with the children during playtime.

    Session Two

    After playtime we stayed in the same groups and introduced the idea of the playground. The groups did different activities. Inside we looked at inspirational pictures relating to the idea of playground and playtime. These ranged from play equipment images to pictures of clouds. Outside in the bikeyard we started to use the stones to make shapes and objects outside that could be used for play.

    Assembly – Friday 13th October 2006 (Year One)

    Brief Description

    We conducted a play which introduced the idea of animals having different homes and play environments, what they were made out of, if they liked their home etc. The children were actively engaged throughout the assembly by answering questions posed to them by us.

    This led on to asking them about their homes, who made them, what they were made out of and who designed them. This introduced the idea of the architect.

    Explained to them that as architecture students we would be in their school to help design the playground. We asked for their help by requesting their ideas in picture, word or other format that they could post in a box in the main reception the following week.

    Workshop Two – Friday 13th October 2006 (Foundation Year)

    Brief Description

    Session One (Class 3)

    Sat them down on a rug in the bike yard with their decorated treasure where King Bertie introduced the task of creating a safe place for the treasure. We split into 3 groups depending on treasure colour. Each group were allowed to select pieces of equipment provided by ourselves which included pipe insulating tubes, rope, fabric, chalk and tape. The aim was to try and let the children lead the task.

    Session Two (Class 2)

    The task was again introduced by King Bertie on the rug in the bike yard. As a result of the first session we decided to make a safe place for the treasure as a whole group led by ourselves. This left little room for their input. We built a large enclosure for all of the treasure and so all of the children could participate in the same activity.

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