parents: melissa’s story

Melissa is the mother of a boy, Henry.

“I have a kid who sometimes gets overwhelmed in social situations. He loves to play but if there are too many kids around, sometimes he’ll just kind of shut down and go inside. He’ll stand and watch and he won’t interact.

“I was really surprised to see that he didn’t do that. He immediately just sort of seemed to feel very comfortable and wanted to participate in what the other kids were doing. That’s rare in a group of kids. Sometimes it just takes him usually about a half hour to kind of warm up, but here he seemed really comfortable. He seemed happy playing on his own if he found a block that he really wanted to explore, but then he would sort of take that piece and try to add it to something that somebody else was doing. It was really nice to see that he wanted to collaborate and that he wanted to be part of what the other kids were doing."

“more possibility for discovery”

“It’s fun to see him happy—just to see all the kids smiling and laughing and engaged creatively. I want to see him using his brain and engaging creatively and making sure that he’s moving his body and getting exercise."

“getting his whole body involved”

“Sometimes at the playground, I can see him getting bored, especially in the sort of movement that are designed to be super safe. They’re different than the playgrounds we played in as kids. There was more danger, but there was also more possibility for discovery.

“I think that playgrounds have gotten so safe that they’ve lost a little bit in terms of physical play and imagination. Imagination Playground seems like a the best of both worlds to me. It’s definitely safe, but it’s not prescriptive. There’s no limit to what they can do with it. It challenges him to use his imagination more.

“They’re his scale. He can involve his whole body in the movement and it uses all the gross motor skills—as opposed to the little blocks that he plays with when he’s sitting on the floor. It gets his body moving because he’s running around and lifting things, getting his whole body involved in the play.”

watch our parents video

Real parents react to watching their kids play with Imagination Playground for the first time.