A couple of fantastically messy paint play ideas

Everybody loves paint. Aside, perhaps, from the parents of very well dressed children, but they can learn! Paint is never boring. It provides visual, tactile and olfactory sensory stimulation, it can be mixed, thrown, experimented with and can be used to transform the play space. Paint can be a play thing in itself or beContinue reading “A couple of fantastically messy paint play ideas”

Playful Communication #2: Permission

In play work we talk a lot about permission and in my role I definitely spend a lot of time giving it. Sometimes it’s something simple, just a “yes, you can use that” or “yes, you can climb that’. Sometimes it’s a more complicated “yes if” or maybe a “tell me more….” Sometimes children aren’tContinue reading “Playful Communication #2: Permission”

Let me process my sensory processing

content warning: this post contains discussion of mental health and has self harm mentions I’m a sensitive guy When I say I’m Sensitive, I really mean it, in its most literal sense. Certain noises make me flinch and squirm, certain lights make me nauseous, and food is a textural minefield. Wagon wheels (a biscuit withContinue reading “Let me process my sensory processing”

Diagrams and Laughter

I wanted to take a moment today to share this image. It’s a diagram I drew a couple of years ago and come back to it often when thinking about communication. It shows how laughter uses all our methods of expression at once, its emotional, physical and verbal. I once worked with a kid whoContinue reading “Diagrams and Laughter”

For the love of Cardboard! ; Tips for junk modelling

At 24 years old the simple cardboard box has never lost its appeal for me. With my noble partner-in-creation duck tape and sometimes associates, gaffa, sello and duct (for the pedants), anything is possible. Fortunately most kids seem to feel the same way. So, here are some tips for anyone whose ever felt a littleContinue reading “For the love of Cardboard! ; Tips for junk modelling”

Play Diary: Telling Stories

I know a child who speaks in headlines and snippets from stories of mischief and chaos. He mixes characters, plot points and slapstick action with highlights from days in his life. Though it may sound like a random collage it’s never outside of a certain rationality; rules and facts of life drawn from the workingsContinue reading “Play Diary: Telling Stories”

Playful Communication: the joys of the ‘non-functioning’

“Communication is about our ability to share our lives with other people”             Working in play, particularly in disability and additional needs settings, has blown open my understanding of what communication is. The quote above from therapist and author Phoebe Caldwell is, to me, is the best explanation of where I’veContinue reading “Playful Communication: the joys of the ‘non-functioning’”

Play Diary: Tubes, Tubes and Temporary Playgrounds

Hello and welcome to another play diary This entry will be bit of a flashback to those couple of weeks in the summer where I got very into a bunch of cardboard tubes. Hope you enjoy! Back in the summer I got the opportunity to go into a local play scheme and run a playContinue reading “Play Diary: Tubes, Tubes and Temporary Playgrounds”

Play Diary: Cinematic Cardboard

Welcome to the first in a series of “Play Diaries” I shall be writing and sharing on this site. I do many, many things, but my favourite is being a playworker at The Yard Adventure centre in Edinburgh. The Yard is a fantastic and wonderful place;  primarily it’s a play service for young disabled peopleContinue reading “Play Diary: Cinematic Cardboard”

A Playful Manifesto #1

Within any finite set of criteria there exist infinite ways of being. In play we discover these, play is a space where we explore our possible selves, and how we relate to our environment and other people. We learn to construct space for ourselves, we build, we destroy, we rebuild. Again and again and again.Continue reading “A Playful Manifesto #1”