John LaRue founded Back2BasicPlay, a not-for-profit corporation (501c3 status pending), to promote how play and games help produce children of character while promoting healthier lifestyles.1 Believing that some children tend to turn to violence because they haven't learned how to properly resolve conflict, John suggests that children need to experience social, interactive play through games. By learning to create and play new games, children learn to interact effectively with one another and to resolve conflicts properly.
1. “Back2BasicPlay: The Foundation of Cooperative & Non-Competitive Play & Games.” Back2BasicPlay. < http://www.back2basicplay.org/resources/H%20-%20Seminar%20Outline%20&%20Guidelines.pdf > 1 Feb. 2012.
A balance bike is a training bicycle that has no pedals, gears, or chains. It offers an easy transition from walking to riding for young children especially. The bike is low to the ground and children sit with their feet touching the ground and propelling themselves forward without help from others. This allows children to develop their skill in balancing and steering the bike before adding the need to accomplish the pedal action required for regular bicycles.1
Rabbi Reeve Brenner invented the sport of Bankshot Basketball in 1981 as a way to have a “non-exclusionary,” non-competitive basketball game for all ages and abilities based on skill alone. By lowering the rim to eight feet and eliminating the running and jumping aspects of a typical basketball game, Dr. Brenner created not only an accessible game for those in wheelchairs, but also an inclusive game for those of all physical abilities, including those younger and older than the typical athlete and for families. Dr. Brenner then added the challenge of shooting baskets with deliberately bent backboards, missing backboards, and combinations of hoops and backboards that require intricate banked shots, ricochet and wraparound shots.1
Coming from a diverse background of political science, English, writing, remodeling construction, painting, and sculpturing, Barbara Butler founded Outer Space Design in 1986. With Robert Forrest they specialized in artistic backyard designs, largely building unusual decks. A year later, while working for Bobby and Debbie McFerrin, they were asked to also design an unusual play structure for the McFerrin's two sons. That request shaped and refocused Barbara's company to combine building outdoors with wood using artistic designing and satisfying families who want to play together.
The game of basketball is a team sport enjoyed both on the school playground and on indoor courts. Two teams of usually five players each attempt to score points by tossing a basketball through a net at opposite ends of the playing court. The relative ease of the rules of the game and the little equipment needed make basketball one of the most popular games played today, and many families have basketball hoops in their driveways for family fun.
One of the oldest playground companies in the United States began in 1920 when John E. Burke incorporated the J.E. Burke Company in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. What started as a weather-stripping business built on the family farm changed drastically in 1920 when one of their friends asked them to build a slide.
With a love of designing and a growing family of their own, J.E. and Ethlyn took the challenge and started designing and manufacturing playground equipment, such as slides, see-saws, swings, carousels, and chinning bars. Very soon the playground products took over the focus of the company as well as the showroom. When it was warm in Wisconsin, the showroom was expanded to the outside lawn where local children could “test” the products.
Jay Beckwith, one of the “fathers of the modern playground,” attended Whittier College starting in 1961. He then went to San Francisco State University for a Fine Arts & Design degree in 1963 and did graduate studies at Pacific Oaks College in Child Development in 1965.
Beginning in Berlin in 1865 as a manufacturer of steel cables for the Berliner elevator industries, Berliner Seilfabrik entered the playground industry in the 1970's with their world famous ropes made into play climbing structures. With nearly 40 years in the play equipment industry, Berliner Seilfabrik GmbH & Co. established the subsidiary, Berliner Seilfabrik Play Equipment Corporation in 2008. The company is now headquartered in Greenville, South Carolina.
The Beyond Access program disseminates information on designing physically accessible and socially inclusive playgrounds for children of all abilities. They recognize that “no other activity in children's lives provides as much richness and experience as free play,” and yet “the typical playground may often be a place of failure for a child with a disability.” They believe the ideal playground “enables all children to use their individual strengths and abilities to engage in play independently and equally with their friends, siblings, and neighbors.”1
1. “Beyond Access.” Center for Persons with Disabilities. < http://www.cpdusu.org/projects/access/ > 14 June 2012.
BigToys began as Northwest Design Products started by Chuck Kirby and Al MacPherson in 1962. They weren't sure what they were going to produce, but they knew it would be in the Pacific Northwest. Based out of Tacoma, Washington, they started by designing and manufacturing wooden prefabricated dog houses that were a sure sell. However, it wasn't enough to financially support them.
Biophilia is a term invented by psychologist Erich Fromm to describe the love of life and living systems. Edward O. Wilson, a Pulitzer Prize winning author and Harvard biologist, expanded on the meaning and emphasis of biophilia believing that the human love of nature and animals is a genetic result of evolutionary processes. The love of nature, suggested to be genetically encoded in humans, was further investigated in The Biophilia Hypothesis, edited by Wilson and Stephen Kellert.1
Building blocks offer hours of open-ended play and learning, and block play has been a classroom mainstay in early childhood and elementary school education for years. Block play was emphasized and studied by early educators, such as Froebel, Montessori, Hill, and Pratt. Their theories that encouraged giving children physical objects to play with as the basis for learning was revolutionary in the 19th and early 20th centuries.1
1. Hewitt, Karen. “Blocks As a Tool for Learning: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives.” Young Children. January 2001. NAEYC. < http://www.naeyc.org/files/yc/file/Hewitt0101.pdf > 30 Nov. 2011.
Blue Imp’s name was derived from Blue Implement, a company that manufactured steel farm implements, and was started in 1917 by S.F. Scott in Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada. At that time, the demand for farm equipment had dwindled, and there was an increasing demand for playground equipment.
During the depression years, the company had to use salvaged materials from decommissioned railroad cars in order to build the playground pieces, and in 1936 Blue Imp built its first swing set.
Blue Implement officially changed their name to Blue Imp in the 1950’s. At this time they were commissioned by the local Lion’s Club to build playground equipment for the city parks.
One of the most popular and enduring types of games are board games. Also called table games, board games have a set of rules governing the play that usually have a defined beginning and end as well as a competitive element in trying to beat the other player. The games are played on game boards, and there is a huge variety of games suitable for play by children and adults depending on their complexity.1
1. Whitehill, Bruce. “What is a Game?” The Big Game Hunter. < http://thebiggamehunter.com/main-minu-bar/welcome/what-is-a-game/ > 9 Sep. 2011.
Bone fracture injuries account for about two-thirds of all injuries on playgrounds. Nearly all of these fractures (90%) involve upper limbs and come from falls from monkey bars or climbing frames.1 Woltzman also found that injuries in children ages 1-4 years old were more likely to involve bone fractures. Lillis and Jaffe found that most hospitalizations due to playground injuries were from fractures of upper extremities. They found that older children’s fractures were mainly from climbing apparatus, while younger children were generally injured on slides.2
1. Beaty, James H. and James R. Kasser. Rockwood and Wilkins’ Fractures in Children: Text Plus Integrated Content. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2009. p. 303.
The Boston Schoolyard Initiative (BSI) is a partnership with private and public organizations for the purpose of “transforming schoolyards into dynamic centers for recreation, learning and community life.”1 Believing that the condition of the school grounds indicated the health of that community, BSI seeks to involve the local neighborhoods to create inviting public spaces for recreation and learning in all the schoolyards of Boston.
1. “History.” Boston Schoolyard Initiative. < http://www.schoolyards.org/about.history.html > 21 May 2012.
As a young woman, Amy Jaffe Barzach was distressed as she watched a little girl in a wheelchair crying because she couldn't join the other children playing at the local playground. Shortly thereafter, Amy’s second child, baby Jonathan, was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy. Jonathan passed away at the age of 9 months. She realized that if Jonathan had lived longer he would have been in a wheelchair, and she remembered the little girl crying because she could not join the others at the playground.
For 40 years Dr. Louis Bowers was a physical education researcher, grant writer, professor, author, and administrator in the higher education arena with a specialty in Adapted Physical Education and a focus on the development of children with disabilities through play. As a Distinguished University Professor Emeritus at the University of South Florida in Tampa, Florida, he continues to conduct research, write, and volunteer his professional services to the community.
The Boys & Girls Clubs of America provide a safe and affordable place for young people to gather during non-school hours and during summer vacation months. They seek to assist all young people “to reach their full potential as productive, caring, responsible citizens.”1 Their core beliefs include providing hope, opportunity, character development, stable relationships with adult professionals, and a safe place to learn and grow.2
1. “Who We Are.” Boys & Girls Clubs of America. < http://www.bgca.org/newsevents/Pages/Media_Kit.aspx > 10 Oct. 2011.
2. “Our Mission.” Boys & Girls Clubs of America. < http://www.bgca.org/whoweare/Pages/Mission.aspx > 10 Oct. 2011.
As the “voice of brain injury,” the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) is the oldest and largest brain injury advocacy organization in the United States. Advocacy, research, and educating the public have been the primary focuses of the Brain Injury Association through the years.1 There are more than 40 chartered state affiliates and hundreds of local chapters and support groups in the nationwide network.2
1. “About Us.” Brain Injury Association of America. < http://www.biausa.org/About-Us/about-brain-injury-association.htm > 23 Feb. 2011.
2. “Welcome to the Brain Injury Association of America.” Brain Injury Association of America. < http://www.biausa.org > 16 May 2011.
Howard S. Braucher provided a clear vision of the role and importance of recreation for all people, guided the emerging American recreation movement, and anchored the National Recreation Association as a supportive organization of play and recreation. He believed that, “Play is the great creator of personality, after worship the surest means of growth,” and that “Society has ever been in great peril when it has failed to provide recreation and adventure as well as food... The indomitable spirit of man is his own undoing if he has no outlet for adventure, for living, for recreation.”1
1. Butler, George D. Pioneers In Public Recreation. Minneapolis, MN: Burgess Publishing Company, 1965. pp. 104-105.
Brewer's Ledge, Inc. was founded by two cousins, Jeff Brewer and Conant Brewer, in 1990, making it “one of the oldest climbing US companies.”1 In the ensuing years, their creative climbing structures for schools, training facilities, rehabilitation, and playgrounds has spread from Boston, Massachusetts, to twenty-eight countries and five militaries.
Strong National Museum of Play in Rochester, New York, now known as The Strong, officially named their library and archive holdings the Brian Sutton-Smith Library and Archives of Play in 2009. With 130,000 volumes the library is “devoted to the intellectual, social, and cultural history of play.”1 They support the study of play through an interdisciplinary approach recognizing the “multifaceted and multigenerational scope of play.”2
1. “About.” Brian Sutton-Smith Library and Archives of Play. < http://www.libraryandarchivesofplay.org/about > 4 April 2011.
2. “Collections.” Brian Sutton-Smith Library and Archives of Play. < http://www.libraryandarchivesofplay.org/collections > 5 April 2011.
Dr. Stuart Brown grew up on the southwest side of Chicago, went to parochial high school, and received his BS from Wheaton College. He went on to medical school and took a rotating general internship and then settled on family practice. In order to strengthen his diagnostic skills, he went to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester Minnesota, for a fellowship in internal medicine. He later became the Assistant Dean of Baylor and took a residency in psychiatry.
Virgil K. Brown was a scholar and an author of the recreation movement in America as well as the administrator of the Chicago Park District Recreation Division during the first half of the 20th century. Lebert Weir, a co-worker, characterized Brown with this tribute: “Among the leaders of the nation who have mightily advanced the recreation movement in America, V.K. Brown is distinguished by his vision, wide range of knowledge, interpretive powers, leadership qualities, and organizing ability.”1
1. Butler, George D. Pioneers in Public Recreation. Minneapolis, MN: Burgess Publishing Company, 1965, p. 94.
Bullying has been defined as a type of aggressive behavior that causes distress or harm, demonstrates an imbalance of power, and is repeated over time. The child being bullied usually has a difficult time defending himself, while the bully gets great satisfaction from his aggression, perpetuating the bullying cycle.1
1. Piotrowski, Debra and James Hoot. “Bullying and Violence in Schools. What Teachers Should Know and Do.” ACEI.org. < http://acei.org/wp-content/uploads/bullyingfulltext.pdf > 17 Dec. 2010.
Kathleen Burriss, an authority on early childhood development and play, founded the annual Play Symposium held at the Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) in Murfreesboro, Tennessee.1 She is a professor at MTSU as well as a prolific writer and speaker on the subjects of early childhood learning, outdoor learning, and play. She believes that children's learning is “best facilitated by playful approaches that draw upon individual interests and the creative, adaptive, and problem-solving functions of the brain.”2
1. “Play Symposium.” Middle Tennessee State University. < http://mtweb.mtsu.edu/play/kathleen_burriss.htm > 9 March 2012.
As a playground, sports, and park equipment distributor, BYO Recreation's company motto is within their name: Beyond Your Ordinary Recreation.1 They believe that “play is an important part of a child's development” and that “playgrounds provide numerous benefits for children, both mentally and physically. They encourage children to challenge themselves every day, making playgrounds a great educational resource for parents and teachers.”2