Category Archives: Swedish playgrounds

Reeling through the Years II – Somewhere over the Rainbow

Thanks to PlayGroundology’s 500+ subscribers and readers from over 140 countries, the blog has clocked nearly 600,000 page views since January 2010. I had no idea at the outset how it would all play out. It’s a great ongoing adventure and journey of discovery.

This hobby, morphed into an unpaid vocation of sorts, has opened so many doors. I meet play ambassadors from around the world and hear from readers on how they are inspired by specific posts. Most of these encounters take place online but it’s been a real treat to meet some folks in person in Glasgow, Toronto, San Diego and right here at home in Halifax.

There are just so many inspiring stories about play and kids. There is also a lot of important advocacy work to be done to ensure all kids have an opportunity to play. As PlayGroundology gears up for its ninth year, we’ll be sharing some of our milestone stories with you throughout the month of January. I hope you enjoy this second installment.

Kids at Play – flickr Photo Gallery – July 29, 2011

Flickr is a great source of visuals for play. This is one of the earlier flickr galleries I put together. There have been over 2,000 views but I think the quality of the photos of kids from around the world playing is very evocative and well worth a look. Let me know what you think if you click on through.

All told I’ve curated 35 galleries. Among them is Swedish Aesthetic which was picked up and promoted by the flickr blog. There is really nothing quite as marvellous as a fine shot of a kid at play.

The Playground Paradise Principle – Malmö, Sweden – February 6, 2012

It’s not everyday that you’re going to see a rainbow slide. Truly they should be de rigueur wherever small kids gather. This Swedish city has embraced the value of play and has become a bit of a destination for families from other parts of the continent. The municipal government even offers study tours of their play spaces that also includes pitches for the locally invented puckelball.

Paradise might be a bit of a stretch but Malmö, Sweden is quite simply playgroundalicious. It’s the kind of place that would inspire Mary Poppins to gather her young charges around her and umbrella them off to adventure – up through the atmosphere/ up where the air is clear/ let’s all/ go to Malmö.

So if anyone ever has spare airline tickets to Malmö don’t forget to give me call. Copenhagen would be fine too, I’d just take a drive across the Oresund bridge…

Sir Ken of TEDalot on Play and Learning – May 6, 2012

British education reformer Sir Ken Robinson’s TedTalks have racked up millions of views. He is a great storyteller who is passionate about his subject matter and audience. I was lucky enough to see him in person at an event in Halifax several years back and used it as an opportunity to reach out and ask about play.

There are three key terms when we come to think about play. The first is imagination, the second is creativity and the third is innovation.

Sir Ken warmed to the play topic and waxed on for about 5 minutes which you can read about here.

The Unbearable Lightness of Swinging – June 28, 2012

When was the last time you had a swing? It’s been too long for me. I really must remedy that.

There’s something cosmic about swinging, a certain je ne sais quoi. Swings are all grace and simplicity as they trace their airy arcs. In downward sweeps there is the tickling acceleration of free fall. Then as the pendulum tracks the outer bounds of its trajectory, the weighty hand of gravity pulls down.

A couple of more installments coming your way over the coming weeks.

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Northern Playgrounds – Flickr Gallery

It’s just one week until Christmas, a holiday that over the last couple of centuries has got the imprimatur of the Far North. Can you go any farther than the Pole? The photo below is from Tromsø well within northern Norway’s Arctic Circle real estate. Click through for a fine gallery of Northern Playgrounds from the great photographers at flickr.

Start the holiday countdown and experience the freezing from the warmth of your own home.

Playground – Tromsø, Norway. Photo credit – postdemocracy. Creative Commons – Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Flickr Blog Features PlayGroundology Curated Photos

What a pleasant surprise last night when I discovered that the Flickr blog had featured some photos curated by PlayGroundology in a flickr gallery entitled Swedish Aesthetic.

Click photo to enlarge

The appearance of PlayGroundology‘s curated photos in the Flickr blog was absolutely effortless on my part. Given that I was oblivious to it all, it was actually less than effortless. It all came to pass through standard social media sharing. Florida blogger and friend, Meg Rosker – Let Children Play, simply tweeted the link to the Swedish Aesthetic gallery to @flickr and the flickr folks took care of the rest. Thanks Meg and thanks too to flickr’s Kay Kremerskothen for making these photos available to a wider audience.

Click photo to enlarge

I never tire of thanking the photographers who post their images to flickr. Curating photos using the gallery function is nothing short of a gift.

There has been a surge, a large uptick of visitors to this particular gallery. Some have sent kind words offering to take playground photos in their countries to share with the readers of PlayGroundology. I’ll be taking them up on this great offer.

There are more great playground photos – 13 PlayGroundolgy curated galleries worth right here. One of my favourites is Kids at Play.

Christmas Playgrounds

There isn’t much in the way of snow yet at PlayGroundology’s home on Canada’s Nova Scotia coast. There weren’t two flakes to rub together for jolly St Nick’s arrival. No white blanket wrapping the ground on Christmas Day this year.

For those of us who are missing the snow and for others who just love its presence, PlayGroundology has put together a flickr gallery of Christmas-like playgrounds from the planet’s arctic and sub-arctic regions.


Three Wooden Pigs – by avidday
Creative Commons – Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic
Click here or on image above for flickr Northern Playgrounds gallery.

These three wooden pigs from Oulu, Finland made me think of the pigs of Christmas past. Each and every one is a succulent walking roast. Are they forever on their way to see the new born king?

From the cozy warmth of our own homes we can take a circumpolar flight and touch down at playgrounds in Alaska, Nunavut, Canada, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Siberia, Russia. We can also let our imaginations loose and think how kids use this equipment in winter weather. Oh, and if you’re tempted to lick the ice on the metal structures, thankfully these are just photos.

Many thanks to the wonderful photographers who share their work on flickr and make these galleries possible.

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