LEA plays up at Morialta Conservation Park
Adelaide's young and young at heart have embraced a new outdoor play space.
On 11th of April, a hot autumn afternoon that must be ranked as one of the filthiest Adelaide has seen in decades, a brave band of 23 educators, architects and others, including couple of newly minted next generation learners, ventured to Morialta Conservation Park with designers Simon Hutchison and Peter Semple to explore South Australia's newest nature-play focused public playground Muka Muka Rrinthi.
With their enthusiasm undaunted by the dust laden wind, and reassured of our safety by attendant Aboriculturist Marcus Lodge from Arborman Tree Solution (event sponsors), Simon and Peter first explained the thinking and the practical challenges involved in developing the facility. Then they led the group through the five key nodes of the playground scattered amongst the river red gums along the Fourth Creek namely, the Eagles Nest, Great Snake, Kookaburra Nests, Climbing Boulders and Frog Island.
Key features of the play zone include:
- incorporation of local Kaurna art, symbols and language into the play structures encouraging discovery during play
- maximum use of found materials and recycled elements to create unique large-scale elements as well as encouraging imaginative play with windfall sticks etc
- deliberate attention to encouraging learning through challenge, with the opportunity for parents and carers to relax on the lawns and seating while still maintaining awareness of their children's activities around them
- introduction to other activities in the Conservation Park such as rock-climbing, catchment care and bushwalking.
This new play space, which overnight has become one of the most popular destination for kids in Adelaide, has proven that the positive benefits of outdoor learning can be enjoyed by children of all ages and abilities… 0 to 60, even 70+ !
Article: Andrew Gehling
Photos: Marino Rossi and Candy Aung