What a great time Purpose Academy students had when Build & Play came out. I was amazed at how middle schoolers could be so creative and have so much fun with simple resources. Our students have been asking over and over if we are going to do it again. Such a great opportunity for the kids. It was so much fun to watch them and see all the different ways they came up with using the materials they had.
It (Build & Play) allows children to be children. They need that so much. It offers creativity and free play which is great for social emotional learning.
I work here. It is always quiet. I never hear the sounds of children. I have no children of my own. No nieces or nephews. Nothing. The children are always quiet, serious, shy, afraid. Now you (Sunflower Play Initiative) are here on the carport. I am working and it’s not quiet. I hear laughter and joy, children talking, planning, playing. I’ve never heard it before. I come down from the office and see the smiles, they are eating good food. They are happy. They’re having fun. It is good to see them being kids. Being real kids, having a childhood.
As a mom and teacher, it was wonderful watching my kids completely engage their full self. The blocks of ice, colored water, cardboard boxes, teepees, and tires, provided a safe learning space where my kids could explore, create, imagine, and immerse themselves physically, mentally, and spiritually. If only they could play and learn like this every day!
My most memorable events in my childhood were spent outside and in the company of friends playing and exploring and from dawn to dusk. Today I see children in front of screens or taking tests at such a young age that they seem to miss the opportunity to just enjoy themselves. I hope events such as Build and Play will reinforce the importance of bringing play back into the forefront of our children’s lives and allow them to enjoy awesome wonder of the world around us.
With Build & Play, the children are in charge which is what they love, they aren’t behind a desk they use their brain to create anything they want, nothing is impossible or wrong when it comes the B&P sessions.
After having Build & Play on my program, my feelings about free play changed in a positive way. The children I help come from low-income families and some of them experience a lot of stress. I could see how happy they were playing and when the sessions were over, they were able to go home feeling better.