Our class discussion preceding the elementary school posed a number of thoughts, ideas, and potential ways in which places for children (in cities) can be improved. We learned from Jacobs that children prefer the streets, though it’s not necessarily the safest place for them. I remember hearing Prof say that a number of children were hit by cars when this transition into the streets first took place in the 1960’s. Gradually we have grown to keep an eye out for children in the streets, which is actually a reason why they may feel safer today than at a park that doesn’t have eyes on the street. The mentality is “If something bad happens, there will be someone here to see it / stop it.” As Jacobs mentions in the readings, this could be why some children feel “cocky” on the streets.
We had the opportunity to visit the elementary school last Thursday and it was an absolute blast. The children were so fun to be around, but it was so interesting to hear what they thought about the Kaki tree and what it represented. Their genuine thoughts of positivity, unity, and purpose aligned with ours on a broader scale and I found that absolutely fascinating. I think the Kaki tree may also provide a “safe place” for them as well. Not only will it be aesthetically pleasing, but the kids who decide to go there may be able to bond over the same thing which could potentially enhance relationships and create a better sense of community and global awareness between children.
(Sorry for stealing this photo, I really like it and I can’t remember who took all of them!)
After having the time to reflect on some of these things, I found my way back to the terrace and some potential ideas for it. I hope that children will find their way to the terrace and feel the same sense of “cockiness” when they decide to make it their own stomping ground. I guess the main question is, “what can we provide the kids to make them feel this way?”