Kids in a pre-school program in Nova Scotia can look all they want at their playground's equipment...they just can't play on it.
That's because the play structures are labeled for use by children age 5-12, and the pre-schoolers are ages 3 and 4.
That doesn't mean the equipment is a Monty Python-esque contraption of rotating knives. Only that a cautious company labeled its slides and such as suitable for older kids, and the program is worried its insurance won't cover any kids injured on equipment not officially deemed for them.
But as Playgroundology points out:
Let’s remember that these school playgrounds are open to the public after hours and kids can play on the equipment as they choose regardless of age.
Kids have ALWAYS played with equipment that did not have a specific age range attached to it. Hills, rocks, streams, trees -- these do not come with "Do not touch till age X" warnings. So kids approached them and played. It is far more strange to start labeling the world than to assume kids will encounter it and do what they can.
If something is too hard for 3-year-olds to climb, they won't climb it -- or they'll try to, and learn about bravery, taking risks, and maybe how it feels to fall...
And how it feels to start climbing again. How can we expect to raise resilient kids when we don't trust their resilience, even on playground equipment fit for kindergarteners? - L
Photo from Unsplash, by @Kalebart