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"Just Playing" Playground Design


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Keywords: playground, area, math, persuasive writing, digital camera, proposal, letter writing
Subject(s): Art, Social Skills, Technology, Writing, Earth Science, Information Skills, Photography, Math
Grades 4 through 5
School: Bremen 4th/5th Grade Academy, Bremen, GA
Planned By: Jennifer Hammond
Original Author: Jennifer Hammond, Bremen
Students will begin by taking a mini field trip around the school to scope out a location for a safe and fun playground. They will consider proximity to other classrooms, landscaping, and proximity to roads and driveways. Incorporating their persuasive writing skills, students will write a letter to the principal requesting a certain area be reserved for a new playground.

Once the principal has "approved" a specified area, the students will measure the area in small groups, deciding on the best measuring tools for the job. They will compute the area of the "area" using formulae. Next, they will begin researching types and sizes of playground equipment to decide what will fit into the area and what will accomodate 2 to 5 classes of children at a time. They will compute the costs of the equipment.

Finally, the students will prepare a proposal for potential donors which will include a digital picture of the proposed area, drawings or digital "blueprints" of the new playground, costs of the equipment, and information supporting the need for a playground.

As this is an actual need for our new school, we would then submit these proposals to the principal for use in attracting donors for an actual playground.
Comments
This is an actual need for our school. Our students do not have a cordoned area for playing during recess; therefore, the students will truly buy into this project because they really want a playground.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
Persuasive writing topic for Language Arts
Follow-Up
Meet with business professionals from a local company which produces the plastic portions of playground equipment (slides, swing seats, etc.).
Materials: Digital Cameras, Art Tools, Printers, Flash/USB Drives, Tripods, Batteries, CDs and DVDs, Writing, Elementary, Spreadsheet, Slideshow, Clip Art