Obtaining New Sandpit Toys
The PTA recently learnt there were only a handful of sandpit toys left at school to share between the junior and senior sandpit areas and lots & lots of children who wished to play in the sandpits. This was a dilemma we could solve! Here's how we did it...
Trish and Steph hung out and chatted to the children in the large sandpit to see how they played and what toys they might like. Shovels to dig with and some buckets with sandcastle shapes were the most common requests. One thing we did notice was how nicely everyone was playing together in the sandpit, how much collaboration & sharing was going on and how much imagination they had to use due to the lack of equipment. We thought this was actually a good thing!
Quality & Choice
We checked the quality of the tools they already had and found they were good quality, heavy duty plastic. After looking in the school supplies catalogue and visiting the Playcentre Shop in Sydenham we found that the Playcentre Shop stocked the exact same good quality items as in the schools catalogue, except they were half the price. They also had a really good range of sandcastle making moulds which we thought were even better than buckets, and would encourage a lot more creativity & options. We thought a good selection of basic items plus some more interesting items would be useful to continue to inspire the children to use their wonderful imaginations.
We thought it would be a good idea to limit the number of new items purchased, so the children could continue working collaboratively. We also felt less items might encourage children to show a greater appreciation, and be more inclined to look after them.
We needed to consider where the new items would be stored. Rongomatane have a large wheelie bin. The children are in charge of packing it up at the end of the day, and the teachers store the bin in the classroom foyer at night and at the weekends. Trish investigated wheelie bin options and actually discovered an abandoned wheelie bin at the old Freeville site. It was in excellent condition apart from missing a lid, so she located a replacement lid from a local supplier in Chch, and planned to “pimp” the bin with orange paint to make it look cool.
Looking After the Toys
The children from Tane Mahuta and Tawhirimatea use the senior sandpit the most, so we have asked the teachers from those classrooms to see if they can arrange for monitors to pack away the new toys at the end of each day and store them in their foyer in the new bin.
So now the Rawhiti School children have a great range of sandpit toys to keep them busy at breaktimes. And that means happy kids. Like we said, it's the little things that matter!
About the PTA
We are passionate and committed PTA from Christchurch's east-side suburbs.