Gym construction forces change of preschool playground


Daphne Yu

Do you remember recess?
Now, do you remember that sinking feeling at the beginning of fifth grade when teachers announced recess was a thing of the past?
A version of that sense of loss is what the preschoolers here are experiencing right now.
Of course, recess isn’t gone permanently for them, but until the playground is moved to its new spot on the northwest side of the school, there won’t be any recess.
“I came in the morning and the playground was still there. There wasn’t any work done on it. Then we came back out at 11 a.m. and it was just gone,” said Christine Beck, the preschool teacher. “We had to come up with a plan to entertain the kids pretty quickly after that.”
The playground is being moved to accommodate the new addition to the gym. A new basement is being built and the gymnasium itself is being extended.
The northwest corner of the school was chosen because it would protect the children from inclement weather by shielding the playground on two sides with walls,  Principal Mark Maus said. It also allows for the parents of the preschoolers to easily pick up their kids in the north lot.
“The gym is expected to be done August of 2013,”he said. “The playground is expected to be finished by the end of next week.”
The preschoolers are adapting to the move from their usual haunt without too much hardship.
“We have a cart that we filled with some toys like hula hoops and foam noodles,” Beck said. “We still go outside; we just don’t have the playground.”
Kyron J. Hunter, a five-year-old preschooler, said there are some items he is hoping to see again soon.
“I miss the sandbox and the stairs,” Hunter said, “and the balls.”
By Rajesh Satpathy, Jackson Dubinski and Tyler Dunlap