This July, St Croix Recreation is celebrating Inclusive Play!
Creating a Universal & Accessible play space can be tricky! By adding ADA pieces and incorporating the right surfacing, transfer stations/points of entry and other sensory equipment, play spaces become fun for kids of all ages and abilities! We find that a truly inclusive community needs inclusive playgrounds. This can be completed in a plethora of ways to better include those with sensory disorders, physical disabilities, those with special needs AND care takers… Everyone deserves to be able to use their school and community spaces in their own unique way!
A few of our favorite pieces include:
Freedom Swing by BCI Burke: This swing allows those of all abilities the chance to swing! Recently, Project Manager Mike Basich had the opportunity to work with a local Minnesota family to create a resident’s dream of having a Freedom Swing in their own backyard. Here’s what they had to say. This gives you an idea of how important these pieces and experiences can be to these children:
Levi LOVES his swing, he makes the “mmmm” sound for “more” when I try to take him out if it – pretty awesome! I still can’t believe it’s in our yard and we can just walk out the door and Levi can swing. It’s hard to explain to people how challenging life is with Levi’s high medical needs, severe cognitive disabilities, and Sensory Processing Disorder – we just want to continue to love him well. It’s quite amazing how something like an adaptive swing can positively change the quality of Levi’s daily life – what a provision for Levi! – Amy M.
Kids Bounce by Berliner: These innovative commercial trampoline-style play pieces are specifically calibrated for adolescent bodies, come in a variety of shapes and sizes and have options for those in wheelchairs. This is a newer twist on a classic piece of equipment designed to be a permanent fixture in your park or playground.
Percussion Play Floor Piano: SO many of what Percussion Play offers can be used by a variety of ages and abilities! These are a great addition to your park, playground or public space. Many senior living centers are also adopting musical instruments to their public outdoor areas as more research demonstrates the positive impact of music on the elderly and those with memory issues.
***Remember, there is more than adding a few ADA pieces when it comes to creating an Inclusive Playground and Park! Make sure to consult with a qualified Project Manager to ensure that you are meeting standards and complying with guidelines. You can learn more about Inclusive projects here, including our PROJECT OF THE MONTH: Lake Elmo Elementary School in Lake Elmo, MN.