GameTime Playground in Wheeling, Illinois Named a National Demonstration Site for Youth Fitness
Here's a great story out of Wheeling, Illinois at Mark Twain Park - how appropriate for a great story! The Village of Wheeling applied for a matching grant last year that was part of a statewide funding initiative from Illinois Parks and Recreation Association and GameTime. The community was awarded grant funds to build a new playground that was designed to encourage children to play outdoors for longer periods of time, and to increase their overall physical activity.
With the help of Cunningham Recreation, GameTime's exclusive representative in Illinois, the community designed a new play structure focusing on the unique curriculum found in Play On!, to create the space. The Play On! curriculum is a program created in partnership with PlayCore and SHAPE America to introduce active play opportunities on the playground. SHAPE America is a governing body that establishes standards for developing physically literate students.
That's a good story. Here's the great part:
Because the new playground features six key elements of play designed to promote physical activity (balancing, brachiating, swinging, climbing, sliding, and spinning) and because the community is utilizing the Play On! curriculum, which includes 125 standards-based fitness activities for the playground, Mark Twain Park has been named a National Demonstration Site by PlayCore.
To help celebrate Wheeling's commitment to youth physical activity, through best practices, Mark Twain Park Playground will receive a certificate of recognition, become a part of a network of potential research sites, and will be promoted actively to other communities wishing to create recreation spaces using best practices in design and/or programming.
Congratulations to Wheeling Park District on your new playground and designation as a National Demonstration Site!