The Developmental Playground is dedicated!

October 13, 2011 by JoLynne Lyon

playing boy

A boy plays in the sand box at the CPD's Developmental Playground.

Young children who come to the CPD have been enjoying our new Developmental Playground for some time now, but we officially broke it in this month with a dedication and ribbon cutting.

Nearly 100 people braved cold, rainy weather to come.  Many of them cooperated to make the playground possible. Landscape architects, occupational therapists and educators worked together to ensure that it would be more than fun; it would also encourage a child’s movement, speech, cognition and social development. Private donors contributed more than $15,000 toward its construction.

The vision for the new playground came from experts at the CPD who are well aware of the many benefits of play; how it stimulates physical and social development, fosters language, and even helps a restless child relax.

“We wanted it to be socially inclusive,” said Dr. Keith Christensen, an assistant professor in the Landscape Architecture and Environmental Planning Department and a CPD Faculty Fellow. “It was designed for independence and learning, just to let these kids see how high they can climb.”

Everything—from the sandbox to the water elements to the plants that grow in the margins—was designed to encourage the development of the young children who receive services at the CPD. When the senses are stimulated, learning comes easier.

“We all deal with sensory stimulation in different ways. Some are much more sensitive than others,” said Amy Henningsen, an occupational therapist at the CPD.  “We can diagnose and treat kids with the type of input they need to help them mature in a functional way on this playground.”

Once again, we’d like thank all the donors who made this moment possible. And if you haven’t done so already, check out our Facebook photo album of the event. It shows off the play equipment and some adorable kids.

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