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Shady Oaks Playscape Revisited

by Rusty Keeler
September/October 2008
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/shady-oaks-playscape-revisited/5018312/

For this month's article I thought it would be nice to visit a great natural-playscape-in-action and hear from the director of the school who makes it happen. This project and school is highlighted in my recently released book, Natural Playscapes (Exchange Press, 2008).

Shady Oak Christian School serves children ages two and a half through second grade and in the summer provides programs for preschoolers through fifth grade. The school has an amazing home-like environment with a super go-getting director, Joyce Trigger. Years ago we worked together to devise a Master Plan that she could add to in phases over time as budgets and energies would allow. Like all great playscapes, it is a work in progress. One of my great joys is to get e-mail updates from Joyce with pictures of her latest playscape additions and construction projects. I thought you would be interested in seeing her playscape and hearing a little bit about it in her own words . . .

Why do you think nature is important for children?

Nature seems to be inherently important — even 'natural' to children. They know what to do in and with nature. They need guidance, but not rules or strict guidelines. Nature ...

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