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A Sense of Place

by Helle Nebelong
July/August 2015
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/a-sense-of-place/5022478/

“Green is good for the eyes,” says mother duck in Hans Christian Andersen’s fairytale The Ugly Duckling and science has proved that well-designed green places influence the human mind positively. The five senses are open to impressions and through these senses we acquire knowledge from the world around us. We experience and learn by seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, and feeling. Designing sensory gardens and play spaces for children with physical or mental challenges is a question of designing accessible spaces that work for all ­children, irrespective of abilities and skills. Children with disabilities wish to be treated like other children and should be given the same opportunities.

Garden of Senses
Faelledparken, Copenhagen 

I was employed by the City of Copenhagen to tackle this special task because I had specialized in gardens and playgrounds for children with disabilities. My earlier assignments had been for private special centers, so it was, therefore, a big challenge to design a garden of senses, which would be open to the public 24/7 and was situated in the most visited public park in Copenhagen. 

Previously there was an old, worn out playground dominated by an asphalt surface, which covered the entire area. I designed a garden as one big ...

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