‘Furniture for the Future’ is a playground furniture making programme aimed at empowering local schools and community members to make lasting improvements to their shared space.
Our first programme involved school children, parents and community groups who worked together in 2016 through a series of workshops to collectively design and produce fun, much needed and educational upcycled playground furniture. Our research and previous experience of working with local schools highlighted the need for safe, creative and educational playground equipment that could stand constant use and be long-lasting. From initial design sessions with the school children through to production carried out with the help and support of local community members such as teachers and parents, the Rags to Riches’ team of experienced makers and facilitated this project which was completed early 2017. This project encouraged the children to express and celebrate their creativity and sense of agency through a series of self-directed, loose play and creative workshops. Through group dialogue, the children were encouraged to share their experiences and communicate their needs and expectations. They explored and imagined what they would like to see in their school playground.
Using waste materials such as metal pot lids and hubcaps, plumbers pipes and reclaimed scaffold planks we translated their ideas into physical structures which included water play, sound, dexterity and numeracy games. These interactive ‘Play Stations’ as we call them were tested by the children at a launch event and after tweaking and reviewing certain unstable elements were then securely installed in the school playground.
This project was kindly supported by The People’s Postcode Lottery.