Today Elissa and I traveled to the South Hadley Network for Children office, and spoke about the Playscape Project to a group of early childhood directors and administrators. I had met with this group once before last year before the project started, and it was vital in making the connection with the Collaborative (formerly Hampshire Educational Collaborative) who became the fiscal sponsor of the project. I was struck when I first met this group how they immediately grasped the importance of active play for pre-school kids, and how the world has changed in making it more challenging for preschools to offer active play opportunities. Although I had only met a few of the group’s members, I felt this was a kind of “advisory panel” I would return to as the project unfolded.
So I was glad to return and give a report on how the projects has progressed. It was the kind of gathering that was certain to bring up new ideas and connections to pursue, given the experience and knowledge within the group. As expected, there were several new “leads” to pursue regarding other groups and organizations working on expanding play and motor activities for young kids. Several of the program directors also sound interested in more direct involvement in the playscape project, and offered contact information. I am grateful to the “network” and hope this connection can continue to grow!!