Creative Play Areas is a How-To book full of simple and inexpensive projects that parents and children can do together to develop creativity, imagination, and innovation. This book was originally published in 1990 and sold thousands of copies before going out of print. We now offer this book as a downloadable eBook for the first time.
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All the projects in this book were constructed by Nena and Nonia, a mother daughter team, for the enjoyment and creative development of Nonia’s children and the many other children who enjoyed the “funnest yard in town”. Both Nena and Nonia were public school teachers who recognized a growing trend in the American system towards digital addiction, rote memorization, competition, and children who spend too much time in artificial environments where they don’t physically apply what they are learning to hands-on real life projects. As the school system became more focused on worksheets and test scores, with less funding and emphasis on creative problem solving and innovative thought, Nonia and Nena responded with a book full of ideas to help children grow and develop naturally in an imaginative and creative learning environment.
The book starts out with an introduction about WHY we need to give our children creative play areas, followed by a section about HOW to get started.
The book is 97 pages and features hundreds of illustrations demonstrating children enjoying fun creative projects. The directions for each project are included.
Collectible items for building your creative play area
Creating different levels
Stilts and jumping things
Hit and throw toys
Swings and ropes
Fold-up kid’s tent
Boxes, blocks, and boards
Ladders and climbing things
Fun Path and obstacle courses
Bow and arrow
Pillows and mattresses
Road city map
Card table playhouse
Saw Horse Animals
Costumes and dress-ups
PVC pipe creations
Create your own instruments
Old time toys
Art in the yard or house
Most projects are geared for ages 2-12. They were all built by moms and children with just a few simple tools.
The book begins with an introduction:
Our modern society is in an accelerated era of technology and learning. Our children and grandchildren will enter an adult world we can barely comprehend. They will be expected to make many choices, and they must learn to be critical thinkers and problem solvers as they organize information into workable solutions. We cannot prepare our children for every obstacle they may encounter in life, but we can give them experience by giving them problems to solve.
People have a basic need to learn, explore and create. Our children need to have an environment where they can… explore, organize, create, analyze, tear apart, and build again. These are survival skills needed to function effectively in our complex society.
In our modern society, we have created a void in our children’s education. In many places, we have eliminated the creative play world that our children need. We create a gorgeously sterile environment for our children and then expect them to be creative in it, a difficult task. If they are to become creative, critical thinkers, they must have the proper materials, the space, the time and the motivation….