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This book is a field guide to the many features found at a playground. It can be used as a guide for any playground, but specifically includes features from Mueller Park, Ricky Guerroro Park, Zilker Park and Gillis Park in Austin, Texas.


Table of Contents Things ... to slide on to swing on to climb on to balance on to spin on to hang from to step up to pretend in to ride on the ground to dig in to learn from that look real that make sound

page ... 2 ... 4 ... 6 ... 8 ... 10 ... 12 ... 14 ... 16 ... 18 ... 20 ... 22 ... 24 ... 26 ... 28

e Here w

go! 1

Things to Slide On

Parents! Small children may need a catch when they reach the bottom of the slide.

Also, look for these slide/tunnel hybrids. The enclosed space makes sliding more thrilling!

To slide... Sit down at top of slide with legs out in front of you. Scoot forward till gravity pulls you down!


Sliding i

sF UN ! 3

Things to Swing on

This type of swing allows infants to swing safely. Children of this size will need a push in order to swing.

To Swing... Sitting on the swing, alternate bending and straightening your knees to propel yourself forward and back.


Swing in

g is FUN

, and builds coordination! 5

Things to Climb on

Parents! Keep an eye on your climbing child, as they may find themself stuck at the top!

Dome-shaped features allow for an interplay of climbing and hanging. After climbing to the top, drop down through the bars to hang like a monkey!

To Climb... Step up with your feet while simultaneously pulling yourself up with your hands.


d Climbing builds strength ann! coordinatio 7

Things to Balance on

Simulated ropes courses require a combination of climbing and balance. Try to make it all the way across!

To Balance... Try to walk on a thin platform, placing one foot directly in front of the other, without falling off.

Balancing builds coordination and promotes proper alignment! 8


Things to Spin on

Parents! Watch out, too much spinning can make your child quite nauseous!

Merry-go-rounds are no longer included in playgrounds because of safetey issues. However, there are now new versions that are perfectly safe and just as fun!

To Spin... Gain momentum by kicking off the ground or by shifting your body weight in a circular motion. Stay centered to keep spinning. 10

balance! s FU N e s r i i u g in req n d n i n a Sp 11

Things to Hang from

These curved bars make hanging and swinging much trickier! These are commonly refered to as “monkey bars.�

To hang... Hold on to the bars for dear life! If you can, swing from bar to bar by grabbing the next bar with alternating hands.

Hanging from monkey bars is great for building strength! 12


Things to Pretend in

“Houses� provide a familiar entitity to pretend in, though there are many things on a playground that can invoke imagination.

To Pretend... Imagine another reality, then make-believe that it is real. Pretending allows you to be whoever you want and do whatever you feel! 14

s FUN and promotes creativity! i g n i d n e Pret 15

Things to Ride

This handle slides all the way to the other side!

A small seat attached to a spring provides a fun, safe experience for smaller children.

To Ride... Hold on tight, and move your body to give yourself the momentum to goooo!

Riding is FUN! 16


Things on the Ground

Parents! Playing in gravel is likely to coat your child with a thin layer of dirt!

Where as gravel can be quite dirty, rubber groundcover provides a cushy, cleaner option.

These things... Gravel, wood chips and plastic can all be found as groundcover at playgrounds.

Soft groundcover prevents boo-boos! 18


Parents! Digging in the sand or dirt can and will get messy, very quickly! Bring extra clothes.

Things to Dig in

This sandbox has a water spicket that allows for better sand-construction.

These are usually called “sandboxes.�

To Dig... Use a combination of buckets, shovels and other tools to create whatever your heart desires.



ing in the sa

d fosters creativi n a ty! UN F s nd i 21

Things to Learn from

This game is called “tic-tac-toe.�

Alphabet installments help small children learn to recognize and identify the shapes of the letters.

To Learn... Interacting with games, letters, and numbers while playing encourages the learning process.

Learning helps brain development and builds life skills! 22


Things that Look Real

Things that look real enhance the pretend play of children, encouraging greater use of the imagination.

These things... Real-life mock-ups give children the feeling that they are participating in “grown-up” activity.

Playing with “real” things is FUN and imaginative! 24


Things that Make Sound

This field guide was designed, printed and bound by Corine Brunet for Daniel Lievens’ Junior Studio class in the Spring of 2011.

This is a mock-up of a xylophone.

To make sound... Strike the instrument with sticks or provided mallets. Try different patterns to create a tune.

Playing instruments fosters creativity and teaches music appreciation! 26


Field Guide to Features of a Playground  
Field Guide to Features of a Playground  

This Field Guide can be used by parents or children to learn about the features of a playground.