It’s time to Spring Forward! I always look forward to Daylight Savings Time – I love having daylight longer into the evening hours. For those of you with young children, you probably face the same issue I do during the winter….a serious case of Cabin Fever. Here in the Northeast, it is a rare day that you can go outside in winter without piling on 5 layers (which is like Wrestlemania with a toddler) and you still like your fingers are going to fall off. With DST, the sun shines longer in the afternoon, and warmer temperatures are on the horizon, and, in our house, that means we are going to reacquaint ourselves with PLAYGROUNDS!
If you are a loyal reader, you probably know that KaBOOM! is this month’s beneficiary for Chores For Charity. KaBOOM! is an organization that creates playspaces in partnership with communities around the country. Their ultimate vision is that there will be a place to play within walking distance of every child in America. What a vision!
Using an army of tech geeks, they are reviewing Google Maps satellite images to pinpoint the GPS location of every playground on the planet. OK. Maybe not, but they are using drone aircraft to take aerial shots of cities and towns across the country to see where the kids are playing. Again, perhaps not. Oh, I’ve got it, they are implanting new babies with microchips to track their play habits. No again? But, then, how will they know where every playground is in the country?
The answer is probably the coolest way to volunteer as a family that I have ever heard of. KaBOOM! has a project called Map of Play that relies on volunteers from around to the country to map and review community playgrounds. Your review becomes part of a national playground directory and will be used by KaBOOM! to help identify play deserts – areas that are kid-rich but playground-poor.
I love this idea of a national playground directory for several reasons. 1. As a mom who has moved to a completely new area of the country, I would have loved to be able to search for playgrounds, see pictures and read reviews of them. 2. I’d be rich if I had a dollar for every time I had this thought: “I wish I knew where a playground was around here so I could let these animals run around for a bit.” 3. I would like to avoid the temper tantrums that accompany leaving a poorly maintained playground by simply never going there in the first place. Why does your family need a playground directory?
So, starting today, until DST ends on November 3rd, our family will embark on the Map of Play Challenge! We will “map” every playground we go to regularly and expand our play horizons by visiting and mapping new playgrounds. We invite you to take the MAP OF PLAY CHALLENGE with us….are you up for it??
What’s the best part of your favorite playground? Share it here!