My awesome project, Sand Toys for Seattle, will initially provide sand toys for 25 Seattle Park's (all regions) that have sandboxes in the Children's Play Areas or have sandy beaches used by children. I hope to expand to more parks by inspiring parents/caregivers to supply their neighborhood park. The sand areas will be filled with such items as buckets, shovels, molds, sifters, play bowls and cups, toy diggers, dump trucks.
Some of my fondest childhood memories include playing in sandboxes at the local parks. In sandboxes kids of all ages, genders, ethnicities, languages, and economic backgrounds can all come together and be creative through play. Sandbox play teaches children how to: interact with others; be creative, imaginative and problem solve; share; develop fine/gross motor skills and most importantly...have fun.
Seattle's Parks have many great sandboxes in their Children's Play Areas and sandy beaches. There are over 100 Children's Play Areas out of over 400 parks. Sadly however, the sandboxes and beaches are never designed with sand toys! There is only so much play you have with a pile of sand, but when you add sand toys to the mix, the imagination goes wild.
I believe sand toys should always be available in the sandboxes and beaches of Seattle's Parks and people should not have to bring their own sand toys. Since early 2012, when my oldest son started playing at city sandboxes, I have been regularly filling the sandbox at the Seward Park Playground (closest to our house) with sand toys. It makes me so happy when we go down to the playground to see children playing with the sand toys that I have brought or see the excitement in the children when I drop off toys. I also love to see the community the sandbox creates-children making new friends and the parents/caregivers engaging in conversation. The other day some of the kids were playing together in the sandbox and brought the parents that were talking some of their creations: pretend eggs and coffee!
Funded by Seattle, WA (November 2014)