Hello and welcome to Desert Island Playwork.
The idea is relatively simple. It’s like the long-running BBC radio programme.
Suppose that you have been stranded on an adventure playground, as sea levels rise and the globe warms, whatever. You can only take with you one playwork-related book (and one luxury item, which cannot be a person, so not Scarlet Johannsen or Bradley Pitt, and cannot be a communications device, so put down that iPhone 11.)
What will you choose?
Your task, dear visitor to this blog, is to reply in the comment box below, we’ll collate replies later, telling us which playwork-related book you have chosen, and why, and you can also mention the runners-up and why they didn’t quite make it.
We said book, and we mean books, andnotbut™ you might be allowed a fillum if I, your host, is in a good mood or you make a compelling case. You can mention the film you would have picked if you were allowed to.
I ‘m the judge, and the judge’s decision is final (unless I’m bribed).
You will of course, because this is rather the point, be allowed to argue about, sorry Millenials, I mean discuss in a respectful way, anything related to your own and other folks’ choices.
Why? Because there are some superb books out there that you playworkers will find useful that are being forgotten.
Episode 1 of Desert Island Playwork
So, without further ado, let’s welcome our first guest on Desert Island Playwork, with me, Arthur Battram. Welcome guest, please introduce yourself.
Hello, I’m Arthur Battram, I was big in the 90s.
Thank you, Arthur, and what book have you chosen?
Well it wasn’t an easy choice, but I ‘ve plumped (weird word, books aren’t cushions, but I digress), I ‘ve plumped for “Making Sense: playwork in practice” a little known gem, still, thankfully available as a free download from:
If that book didn’t exist, I would’ve chosen the little red book by Bob Hughes ‘Notes for Adventure Playworkers’, which, oddly, has not (yet) been republished by Common Threads. I didn’t choose this because, although the content is superb and the thinking limpid, it is from a long-vanished era. The role of the playworker described by Bob is a much wider and deeper, more strategic role than that allowed to lowly playworkers today by the like of Ofsted and academy schools.
Or I would’ve chosen the superb, elegant, compassionate and concise ‘Primmer’ by Lady Penny Wilson of Mile End. Why Primmer? Ask me. It is also available as a free download from:
Thank you, Arthur. Why did you plump (you’re right, it is a funny word, plump) for “Making Sense”?
Well, it’s based on the forgotten ‘Best Play’ principles, which tell you what good play provision should look like. And it’s an excellent exposition.
You’all need to stop making ‘The Playwork Principles’ your 10 Commandments and adopt Best Play instead, for the simple reason that the two documents are complementary and are doing different things. The Playwork Principles are about playworkers (duh) and Best Play is about play provision. I can’t say ‘simples’ because if it was, people wouldn’t keep getting confused.
Making Sense is a gorgeous read. It’s full of delightful playwork stories. Yes, it relates these short, sparkly, simple and yet profound stories to the Best Play thingies (and can, and was, used as the basis of training that nobody could afford to buy) but let’s not get into that.
Read Making Sense, you’ll love it. It’s got little short fun stories in it!
It will cheer you up. It might even inspire you or reinvigorate your CPD whatever that is, Cardio-Pulmonary Disease, maybe, or your reflectional practice, what-EV-er.
The links are above, download the freebies to your devices and read them on the way to and from work.
Thank you, Arthur Battram.
If you’d like to appear on Desert Island playwork, leave a message in the comments.