Action Ideas

Click the headings below to learn how can you ensure kids in your neighborhood have great places to play and the time to enjoy them.

Many hands make light work, and getting your friends involved in your play project will make the project more fun!

Call a friend and see if they want to help you clean up a playground, start a playground watch, or even build a playground. Call several friends and see if you can form a play committee to help improve existing playgrounds, build a new playground, or work with your local government to make play a priority in your community.

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Are the playgrounds in your neighborhood unsafe? Ill-maintained? Say something!

Call or write a letter to the mayor, city council, or parks and recreation department. Ask them to make these community spaces a priority.

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Helping make play a priority can be as easy as picking up a newspaper.

Take a walk through your park. Do you notice newspapers and other litter on the ground? Bring a trash bag and some gloves and start tidying it up. A clean playspace is much more inviting than a dirty playspace! Better yet, get some friends to help you. We've got the tools you need to organize a playground cleanup.

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Is your nearby playground a bit drab? Maybe it needs a colorful pick-me-up!

Pick up a paintbrush and give a bench or wall a nice makeover. (Be sure to check with whoever's responsible for the playground first!) Consider painting a mural or some games on the asphalt. Bright, attractive colors could bring more kids – and their parents – out to play!

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Is something taking away the time and space for your kids to play? Send an email to someone who can make a difference!

For example, if recess time is being cut from your schools, email your principal, superintendant, or school board to complain. If you notice playgrounds in your neighborhood need repair, email your parks and recreation department to ask if they can be fixed.

Just one email can make a difference!

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You can help make your park safer simply by sitting on a bench. But you'll need the help of a couple of friends, too.

Organize a playground or park watch. Sit on a bench at your local park with a friend to make sure the kids are safe and people aren't committing vandalism. Make sure you have a cell phone to report any suspicious activity. Make a habit of it and people will start to see the park as a safe place to bring their kids.

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Head over to a city council meeting the next time they offer an open forum for people to ask questions or make comments, then stand up to talk about why play is important, and how the state of play in your community could be improved.

Be sure to do a little research first. Check out a few studies and learn about why play is a necessary part of kids' development.

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Swing a hammer, turn an Allen key – do those things a lot, with a bunch of other volunteers, and you've got yourself a new or refurbished playground!

Of course, it takes a little more than that. But KaBOOM! has got you covered. Check out our online resources that walk you through the process of building a playground – from forming a committee all the way through to maintaining it after it's built.

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Grab your digital camera or camera phone and snap a few pics of a playground near you. Then get those pictures onto your computer and add them to the KaBOOM! Map of Play to help people find playspaces near them. Seeing really is believing.

Start adding pictures.

Slip on your sandals or lace up your sneakers and take a walk. Is there a playground within walking distance of your home? Get out and see what's out there.

If you're not sure where to find the nearest playground, you're in luck – the KaBOOM! Map of Play is here to help.

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The best way to convince people of the importance of play is to get them in on the act. Have a play day for everybody – kids, parents, and other members of the community!

It doesn't have to cost a lot of money. You don't even have to invite the whole town. Just find a day to celebrate play, pick some games and activities, see if you can get some donated snacks, and be sure to tell everyone who comes about why play matters.

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Are your kids restless because recess time keeps getting shorter and shorter, or because your school board doesn't budget for playground repairs? Say something!

Write a letter to the editor. Explain why play is important to kids' social, cognitive, and physical development. For some kids, recess is the only time they get to engage in unstructured play each day. Demand the return of recess and great places for your kids to play at school!

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