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Schools & Education
24 Jun 2022
Why should just students at primary schools have all the fun? Playgrounds at high school and colleges are few and far between, although are becoming more popular as educators realise that younger year levels at secondary schools can benefit greatly from the value of play. Of course, it’s not just any type of playground that suits these age groups. At adventure+, we understand this and are passionate about creating outcomes that are age-appropriate!
The school playground can be the epicentre of development and fun for children of all ages, if only they’re designed to accommodate the demographic for which they’re built.
Where primary school children might enjoy simple, colourful equipment with lots of different options, high school equipment should appear more mature or ‘grown-up’ (if only slightly), with more room for socialising, and more physical challenges. Of course, it should be designed to suit the height of older children.
For junior school students, the transition from primary to high school should be particularly familiar and comfortable, making a school playground all the more important.
While typical images of senior students don’t usually include playground equipment, we see no reason why this shouldn’t be the norm.
In 2017-18, The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare found that only 11% of 15-17 year olds were sufficiently active for their age, while 16% met the recommended muscle strengthening activity guidelines.
This is why we’re passionate about including high school students in the fun of playground equipment. We believe that placing the facilities in their schoolyard will be enough to encourage further exercise.
This is backed by the fact that in 2019, the top motivators for 15–17-year-olds to participate in physical activity were fun/enjoyment (71%), physical health (64%), and social reasons (38%).
As the statistics showed earlier, most teenagers are doing well below the required amount of exercise for their age group, with many school students spending their lunchtimes sitting down.
A well-designed school playground should incorporate equipment that requires users to climb, push, pull or lift to develop upper body strength and balance. From this, skills such as stamina, flexibility, hand-eye coordination, dexterity and strength can all be vastly improved.
Many playgrounds can incorporate problem-solving tasks, such as challenging obstacles, to engage the brain as well as the body. This is an especially important aspect for younger students, as their brains develop in conjunction with daily classes.
School playgrounds for older students should make sure to include spaces for socialising such as benches, hammocks, climbing frames, or play towers. Such areas can provide a regular meeting area for students to develop their relationships outside of class.
A playground designed with older school students in mind won’t feature the same equipment as a typical junior playground. Specific consideration needs to be made for equipment catering to larger hands and stronger bodies. Older children tend to be drawn to equipment that feature any one or more of the below elements:
adventure+ supplies a range of equipment that older children will love.
We are proud to have installed playgrounds across a number of Australia’s state schools where senior high school students enjoy our equipment.
Immanuel College in South Australia opted for a modular rope structure from our pinnacle+ range to keep their students active and engaged during breaks. The labyrinth of low nets offer many opportunities for physically challenging play as well as social interaction between students.
Wonthaggi Secondary College and Fountain Gate Secondary College, both southeast of Melbourne, have welcomed our pinnacle+ play equipment.
The 6m activity net centre mast structure provides a terrific hangout zone at Wonthaggi, where students can improve their social and physical activity.
The same goes for the special design modular rope climbing structure at Fountain Gate – a real eye-catching piece of equipment that students can arrange to meet at for lunch.
Level up your high school’s facilities with a custom-built playground and watch as your students thank you for the new, exciting way to play. The team at adventure+ is happy to help you learn more about the needs of your students and how we can cater to them. Contact us today for a consultation!