Dear Bates Families,

Two years ago we were inspired to plan our first Magnificent Day of Play after seeing the documentary Caine’s Arcade, the story of a nine-year-old boy whose cardboard arcade inspired the world. If you have not yet seen this short film, I recommend you watch it: Caine’s Arcade. Soon after it’s release in 2012, the story of Caine’s Arcade quickly went viral, gathering fans from all over the world, and resulted in 750,000 kids in 70 countries taking part in the Global Cardboard Challenge and Day of Play. We, too, were amazed by this story of imagination and creativity so we launched our own Day or Play in 2014, calling it “The Magnificent Day of Play.” On this day Bates students spend the entire day building anything they can imagine using cardboard, recycled materials and creativity. We structure time during the day for students to not only build but also learn about one another’s creations and to reflect at the end of the day. Our first and second Day of Play were a huge success.

This year’s Magnificent Day of Play will be held on Wednesday, December 14 from 8:30 – 12:00. We will start planning with students at school next week. We encourage families to help their child prepare for the Magnificent Day of Play by collecting materials that students might want to use for a project. Your child may already know what he wants to make or he may gather a variety of materials and decide what to make later. Please consider collecting cardboard as well as recycled and upcycled materials. We welcome students to bring in their materials starting Monday, December 12. Please bring materials in a brown paper bag with your child’s name on it and label larger boxes with your child’s name as well. Children often share materials so a few extra materials may be helpful.

We need parent volunteers to support the Magnificent Day of Play. More than 50 volunteers are needed to hand out supplies, assist with cutting cardboard and tape and to support student problem solving in classrooms. We encourage parent volunteers to play a supporting role and to be a resource to the whole class. A valuable part of the Day of Play learning for students includes working through challenges and making mistakes. This is an important idea in the book Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty, which I shared at our all school Community Meeting yesterday.

Volunteers are also needed to help clean up. Last year our volunteers made this day not only successful for our students but also for our custodians! Many hands definitely make light work, and I thank you in advance if you can stay until 12:15 or 12:30 to help. I will send a sign up link via email on Monday for all volunteer opportunities. In the meantime, please mark your calendars for Wednesday, December 14 from 8:30 – 12:00 and consider volunteering if you are able. Thank you.

Warm regards,

Toni Jolley

Upcoming dates:

Thursday, December 8 Walk to School Day

Wednesday, December 14 Magnificent Day of Play 8:30 – 12:00

Thursday, December 15 Winter Concert, 9:00 a.m. in the gym

Bates Buzz: Day of Play
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