The last 7 days have been a bit busy but in a really good way. I thought it might be nice to share some of the stuff we get up to on a day to day basis at Pop-Up Adventure Play as well as share some photos from my exciting week.
In the UK it was a Bank Holiday, and for me, that usually means busy busy busy. I spent preparing for the rest of the week which meant organising the garage full of cardboard boxes that I had collected together for the 3-day Pop-Up that we had organised in my local community. It was a lot of boxes, and to avoid an early morning panic the next day, I loaded up the car the night before so that I was ready to go the next day.
I also spent the day organising my paperwork for the week. We at Pop-Up Adventure Play know how important it is for children to get our undivided attention during any given session, but as a result, we are always super tired afterwards. To make sure I didn’t neglect anything important or forget to do anything on a time limit, I did it all on Monday so I wouldn’t need to think about for the rest of the week. And also handed any remaining responsibilities over to another member of staff in case anything came up. And then I was ready!
I woke up nice and early to gather my remaining tools for the session. A couple of pairs of scissors, lots of tape, string, and risk assessments. I never go anywhere without them!
On arrival at the location, I signed in then unloaded the car. This always takes a while on the first day of any location but it’s always worth it. There was a huge variety of boxes of different sizes and shapes. Providing this variety means that children have more choice and therefore have more scope for play – the basics of the Loose Parts Theory!
It was a quiet session. Only 4 children playing in intense short bursts punctuated with “Suzannnaaaaa” throughout the 4 hour session. It was wonderful to see, and exciting to be part of, such creative play. The highlight was watching a little boy play out his weekend watching his Dad fixing the roof at home.
There were much more exploration and today than creation, which I am always very excited to see. What will happen when I throw these all over the floor? If I do it again will it do the same thing? If I poke this person with my makeshift sword will he fight back? Will I win if I try again? The children skipped through play types quicker than I could name them in my brain, but for good reason – they were doing things their way, and not for my benefit, and that makes me happy!
It’s tidy up day! But not before 20 children of all ages, races and sizes piled into my Pop-Up Adventure Playground. They had so much fun doing so many awesome and playful things. Houses were the most popular thing to make and they took to it with such gusto, energy and urgency. The adults piled in to help too, which is always encouraging, and I spend a few minutes talking to the adults about the real need for play, and how best to leave the children to their own business. Everyone seemed to really enjoy it and have a wonderful time.