There is a measured swell of unhurry being savoured in pockets around the world. If your meanderings take you somewhere north of langour and south of efficiency you may tarry on this road less traveled. It’s the antithesis of rapid, the slow show as in the slow food, slow cooking movement and potentially a host of other common pursuits.
Just yesterday, I heard Professor Naomi S. Baron, Executive Director of the Center for Teaching, Research, and Learning at the American University in Washington, DC, talking about the advent of slow reading on CBC’s The Sunday Edition. It is an altogether more purposeful, less speedy and ideally distraction-free approach to reading paper-based print material.
Then there is the art of correspondence which is losing ground to texting, emails, videoconferencing and all manner of 20th and 21st century baubles of the instantaneous. Receiving written news with a stamp affixed is a rarity at our house. Our three young children are over the moon when letters, cards or postcards arrive in the letterbox.
Invariably they are from the family in Quebec or from grandparents on a far flung adventure. They are cherished momentarily, embraced with wonder and warmth. My second oldest daughter, now firmly ensconced in her adult years, has kept a bag of letters and postcards sent by family during her preschool and primary days when her mother and I lived in different cities.
This year, our young lad Noah-David is in 5th grade. His social sciences class is collecting postcards from around the world and this, PlayGroundology peeps – from North America, Europe, Australia and points beyond – is where you can help bring a smile to a young boy’s face. Take a moment and pop a postcard in the mail to Noah.
Although I enjoy these antiquarian playground postcards, he will likely appreciate something a bit more modern that speaks to your home and what kids like to get up to there. Our boy loves the natural world, playing outdoors and getting together a neighbourhood game of street hockey, soccer, football, baseball – insert sport of your choice here ___________.
If you’d like to send Noah-David a postcard, tweet me @PlayGroundology and I’ll DM you our address.
He’ll be jumping for joy when he reads your postcard. If you include your return address, Noah will write you a thanks from Canada’s far east….
Now about these ‘slow’ movements, is there a slow play movement somewhere off in the wings waiting to be introduced? Could loose parts make up part of its canon? Stay tuned to PlayGroundology for play news, views and the occasional esoterica.