Our first lesson here at the lab school is designing a playground unique to each individual student. The objective is for each student to create their favorite piece of playground equipment, such as a swing, slide, monkey bars, and then make it even better. The students are encouraged to think outside of the box, creating structures that may not even be possible but are certainly fun.
The first activity we undertook was learning about the artist Leonardo Da Vinci. The students watched and participated in a short slideshow that introduced them to the artist Leonardo Da Vinci. We focused on how he used sketchbooks to plan his bigger paintings. He would do quick sketches that really weren’t very detailed to get the composition and plan the painting. We then passed out the student’s own sketchbooks and gave them scratch paper to decorate the covers with.
After we completed our sketchbooks the entire class went outside to the playground to brainstorm ideas for our structures. One at a time students described their favorite play piece and what they would do to make it even better than it already is. After brainstoriming for a few minutes we headed back inside to sketch some of the ideas. The following video is one of the students work.
Another student had a different idea for their playground.
This student really enjoyed rock climbing and decided that his playground needed to have some structures that imitated that.