Children's Playground Design of Urban Park with Consideration of Children and Parents
LIN Jianyao，HUANG Yuxiu
林建尧 / 1974 年生 / 男 / 宜兰大学园艺学系景观设计规划专业助理教授 / 研究方向为儿童游戏行为与空间设计、园艺治疗与活动设计、农村规划与民宿经营管理
LIN Jianyao, was born in 1974. He is an assistant professor in Department of Horticulture, National Ilan University, majoring in landscape design and planning. His research focuses on children's game behavior and space design, horticultural treatment and activity design, and rural planning and hotel management.
黄郁琇 / 宜兰大学园艺学系
通信作者邮箱（Corresponding author Email）：firstname.lastname@example.org
HUANG Yuxiu, Department of Horticulture, National Ilan University.
Abstract: Children's playground is an important game space during the growth process of children. The thesis explores the needs of children for outdoor game space based on their perspective. Space attributes, such as climbing and beveling, can meet the space requirements of functional games. Non-fixed space design is easier to inspire imagination of children and create various ways for play like constructive games or drama games. However, research of parents showed that accessibility and convenience are the most important considerations for choosing children's playground. Parents are also dissatisfied with the lack of diversity of playground facilities, but they do not realize that children should get more benefits from games in playgrounds. This is a problem which should be addressed in the future.
Key words: Children’s play behavior; Creativity; Parents’ perspectives
现在的儿童被传播媒体吸引，很少在户外直接感受大自然，而户外游乐场是除了家中庭院外为儿童提供最多身体活动的场域 。游乐场其实不仅是儿童游戏的场所，它被赋予了更多的功能，在儿童成长过程中有很大作用。户外游乐场能满足较多需要大幅动作的游戏，如跑、攀爬、跳等大肌肉活动。除此之外，游戏场也可以培养儿童发展责任感，问题解决能力，合作、空间能力和其他多种技巧 。
然而近年各地出现的许多户外游乐场都是由相似的塑胶游戏设备组成，例如，将色彩缤纷的平台、滑梯架设于橡胶铺面上 ，这种相似的游戏设施不仅无法满足儿童对复杂性的发展需求 ，还会让儿童觉得无聊 。
父母对儿童户外游乐场产生了重要影响，决定了儿童是否能进到户外游乐场，若是父母喜欢环境和设施，他们的小孩能达到每日运动建议量 ；反之，倘若户外游乐场不受家长喜爱，则到访频率较低，停留时间较短 。研究团队采用半结构式访谈，汇集家长对户外游乐场的观点，然后将访谈结果与前人文献做统整，编制正式问卷进行调查。
图 1 家长对户外游戏场的类型
Figure 1 Types of Parents for Outdoor Playgrounds
图 2 具有吸引力的游戏空间条件
Figure 2 Conditions for Attractive Game Space
图 3 达到身体活动量的活动
Figure 3 Activities Reaching Amount of Physical Activity
图 4 设计和研究的内容
Figure 4 The Content of Design and Research
身体活动泛指任何运用骨骼肌且能导致任何能量消耗的身体动作 。世界卫生组织将工作、家务、通勤与休闲时的活动都归类在身体活动内，例如站立、提物、走路、跑步、做家务、进行球类活动或其他运动，都算是身体活动的一种。儿童与青少年常见的身体活动多属休闲类身体活动，如在游乐场玩耍、进行追逐性游戏、球类活动与运动等 。
身体活动与健康息息相关，身体缺乏活动更被视为疾病的决定因素 。过去研究证实身体活动对儿童的生理、心理及各项发展皆有益处，儿童期的身体活动也与许多短期及长期的健康结果有关 。世界卫生组织建议5~17岁儿童与青少年每日应达到60分钟以上的中度至剧烈等级身体活动 ，然而现今许多统计结果皆显示，儿童与青少年的身体活动量明显不足 。
学校是儿童与青少年最常接触的场地，课间的身体活动对儿童具有重要影响 。学校具有多种场域类型，可以为儿童与青少年提供进行不同种类身体活动的机会，例如，校园中的“硬铺面区”能为儿童提供进行动态与静态活动的场所，“游乐场区”则是儿童最偏好的活动场域 。
游戏的内容越丰富多元，就越能激发儿童的想象力和对自我与环境的好奇心，有助于儿童脑部的发育，更可以促进儿童生理、心理和社交能力的提升 。因此，游戏可以说是儿童健康成长与发展的核心，也是儿童发展智力和学习能力的重要途径，更是儿童除睡眠外，儿童花费时间最多的活动 
With the rapid development of modern science and technology, the application scope of the Internet will become wider and wider as the technology is becoming more and more developed and people will spend more and more time on the internet. Electronic products such as mobile phones, computers and tablets even fill children's life. This phenomenon will not only affect children's physical and mental health, but may also cause nature-deficit disorder. The "Nature - Deficient Disorder"  ( Louv, 2009 ) mentioned by American writers does not refer to medical diagnosis, but various phenomenon caused by being away from nature, such as overweight, insensitive, inattentive, manic-depressive tendency and possible physical and psychological diseases. At the same time, it will also make people disrespect nature and be unwilling to know about animals, plants, food sources and hometown geography.
Today's children are attracted to the media and rarely experience nature directly outdoor, while outdoor playgrounds are the fields that provide most physical activities for children besides the home courtyard  . In fact, the playground is not for playing, it is endowed with more functions and plays an important role in children's growth. Outdoor games can satisfy more games with large movements, such as running, climbing and jumping. In addition, it can also help children to develop the sense of responsibility, problem solving ability, cooperation, space ability and other skills  .
However, in recent years many outdoor playgrounds are made up of similar plastic games equipment, such as colorful platforms and slides erected on rubber pavements, which are not only unable to meet the complexity of children's development needs, but also can make children feel bored .
In recent years, Australian urban design and landscape architecture have led the trend of improved urban design and planning. Li Yizhen divided these classic cases of outdoor playgrounds transformation into the following four types .
(1) Natural ecological game yard: Based on nature, it chooses natural materials as much as possible to create a game space and construct an activity field according to the field situation.
(2) Cultural landscape game field: There is not a large number of game equipment, but the game part is incorporated into the landscape and presented through cultural landscape.
(3) Adventure Sports Ground: Children like activities with a sense of speed, which will help them exert their imagination and creativity.
(4) Urban Creative Game Yard: Including hole structure and so on, it can enable children to have more different game experiences.
1 Parents’ Consideration
Parents play a very important role in children playing in outdoor playgrounds, deciding whether children can enter outdoor playgrounds. If parents like the environment and equipment, their children will be able to reach the recommended daily exercise amount ; On the contrary, if the outdoor games are not preferred by parents, the children's visit frequency is lower and stay time is shorter . The research team used semi-structured interviews to collect parents' views on outdoor games, then integrated the interview results with the previous literature and formulated a formal questionnaire for investigation
The results show that five factors make up the outdoor games, namely, safety, challenge, accessibility, naturalness and additional facilities. By using cluster analysis, parents are divided into three types: safe and comfortable, accessible and convenient, and challenging and innovative.
1.1 Type One: Parents of Safe and Comfortable Type
This type of parents accounted for 28.4%. The safety and comfort of outdoor game places are more important to them. They don't attach much importance to other factors and take safety first. There may be many studies focusing on parents' concerns and safety. Although the score of safety item is higher among the grade of importance, it is surprising that the number of parents who are concerned with safety and comfort is not as many as expected.
1.2 Type Two: Parents of Accessible and Convenient Type
This type of parents accounted for 44.7%. They do not pay attention to the safety and comfort of outdoor playgrounds, but to the accessibility of outdoor playgrounds. This type of parents is also the largest group, that is, many parents now prefer to choose the outdoor playgrounds that are closest to home and most accessible.
1.3 Type Three: Parents of Challenging and Innovative Type
This type of parents accounted for 24.7%, and they pay the most attention to challenge and the least attention to accessibility. This type of parents will choose outdoor playgrounds of lower accessibility in order to choose challenging game equipment.
According to interviews, parents feel that children's playgrounds can meet the needs of physical exercise and expose children to nature, but at the same time, the playgrounds should be far away from danger and should have service facili-ties such as toilets. Parents generally believe that safety is important and the environment should be comfortable. Therefore, although everyone attaches great importance to the innovation and challenge of the game field, safety is still in the first place ( figure 1 ).
2 Children’s Point of Views
Many studies have shown that the more varied the content of the game is, the more active children's imagination will be. At the same time, it can inspire children's curiosity about themselves and the environment, which can also help their brain development in the process of growing up, and can also promote the development of children's physical, psychological and social abilities     . Children can express their ideas by posting pictures and we can communicate with them.
The study found that children prefer to climb, jump and do some basic body movements that children can connect in series, such as these continuous activities. For example, children play slides, climbing ropes, nets and climbing frames, poles, and all these game environments will all produce the above-mentioned game behaviors. At the same time, when children play with sand pits or dig sand to change different shapes and play various games, they all exert their imagination.
A smooth playground can provide a place for children to do activities smoothly, which means that there is connectivity between facilities and the environment. Therefore, children can think of a series of related activities in this kind of game environment, while the traditional game field is independent of the environment and has no connectivity, so that children cannot connect to other environments immediately after playing in one game environment, resulting in no continuity of the game.
When the playground does not restrict children's various games or the environment is relatively wide, it will stimulate children's innovative ideas and launch activities here because the playground does not specify the purpose. The fixed playing environment limits children's creative playing behavior, such as sliding and rocking horses on the slide, which only causes them to play common functional games.
When children are in a playground environment mixed with various types of characteristics, children can play freely, not be restricted by space ( shadowed space ), and the appearance of the environment is similar to something, which can arouse their association with games and make children more free to create ( sand pits ). However, the traditional game field may be an environment that has not been designed and the facilities or a complete set of game equipment are placed independently at will, so the game space limits the children's imagination of the game behavior, so the children cannot generate rich imagination.
From the above, it can be seen that sand pits are an indispensable playing envi-ronment for children. However, setting up more shielding spaces and holes not only allows children not to be limited by space, but also provides hidden space and allows them to freely create rules and play games ( figure 2 ).
3 Children's Needs
Physical activity refers to any activity that uses skeletal muscle and can lead to any energy consumption  . WHO(World Health Organization) also categorized movements during work, house work, commuting and leisure as physical activities. Activities, such as standing, lifting objects, walking, running, doing housework, playing ball games or other sports, etc., which are considered to be one kind of physical activities. The common physical activities of children and teenagers are mostly leisure physical activities, such as playing in the playground, chasing games, playing ball games and sports .
Physical activity is closely related to health, and lack of physical activity is also considered to be the main determinant of poor health . Previous studies have confirmed that physical activity is beneficial to children's physical, psychological and various development. Physical activity in childhood also affects many short-term and long-term health outcomes  . The World Health Organization recommends that children and teenagers aged 5~17 should do moderate to vigorous physical activity for more than 60 minutes per day . However, many statistics show that children and teenagers obviously do not do enough physical activities .
Schools are the most frequently visited areas for children and teenagers, and physical activity during school hours has an important impact on children . Schools have multiple field types that can provide children and teenagers with opportunities to engage in different kinds of physical activities, such as " hard pavement areas" in schools that can provide children with dynamic and static activities, and children's favorite field of activity is "game field" .
This study measured the heart rate of children by letting them wear smart heart rate watch with GPS system to calculate the intensity and time of physical activity, and used GPS system to locate the active position of children. Through this research method, we can know children's field preference, discuss children's physical activity behavior, and analyze whether the field type and campus configuration in the campus will affect children's physical activity.
The results show that the top three most preferred field types for children are the game field, the ball park and the hard pavement area. The reason why the " playground area" is in the first place is mainly that the game equipment in the playground is attractive to children, and children can also play regular games or chase games here. The reason for choosing the " ball parks" is mainly that children can play ball games there. However, some boys said they would only watch the game on the sidelines. The "hard pavement area" is an important field for children to engage in physical activities, because it does not restrict the types of children's activities. Children can engage in various activities here, such as chasing games, regular games or various ball games. This study suggests that different fields can provide children with physical activities at different times. Generally speaking, playgrounds, halls and grass areas are frequently used by children in the lower grades, while the most frequently used fields in the higher grades are stadiums and hard pavement areas. The study found that although the school adopts a separated campus configuration that is easy for children to go to, it easily limits the scope of children's activities. This study also found that the range of children's activities is limited by the time of their activities, which makes children can only move in the field only near the classroom. When the activity time is longer, the range of children's movement can be expanded to other fields. In addition, this study also found that children are reluctant to go to the field without shade when the temperature is high. Therefore, weather condition and temperature are the climatic factors that affect children's physical activities. There is a significant difference in MVPA(Moderate to Vigorous Physical Activity) among children of different grades ( figure 3 ), and the MVPA of children of second grade is significantly higher than that of fifth grade. Physical activity intensity that makes the heartbeat rate more than 130 BMP is classified as MVPA. The results show that children spend only 11.75 % of their rest time at school in MVPA on average. Children may reduce the average daily MVPA due to various factors such as hot weather, wet ground after rain, curriculum arrangement or physical strength. Research shows that corridors, hard pavement areas, game fields, ball parks, playgrounds and grass areas can all allow children to carry out and achieve MVPA. Most of these activities are ball games, chasing games and using amusement equipment, which means that children will find the most suitable field for physical activities as close as possible and reach MVPA.
The more varied the content of the game is, the more active the children's imagination will be. At the same time, it can inspire children's curiosity about themselves and the environment, which can also help their brain development in the process of growing up, and can also promote the development of children's physical, psychological and social abilities     . Therefore, playing games can be regarded as the core of children's healthy growth and development, an important way for children to develop their intelligence and learning ability, and activities that children spend the most time besides sleeping  .
Games can stimulate children’s imagination and creativity in the process of playing games. Hou Jinxiong and Chen Zhaozhi  have mentioned that the place carefully designed by designers is not necessarily the place that children like most, instead, some casual places can gather many children to play. In this way, not only has the meaning of the original design been lost, but also the needs of children cannot be met. Therefore, it is more important to understand children's needs for games and then to design the games that meet their needs.
By solving the problems of whether there are toilets, dirty environment and inadequate facilities maintenance in the outdoor games, as well as seeking a balance between the challenge and safety of the game equipment, substantive reference opinions should be provided for designers. At the design level, people of all ages can use the game equipment to enhance the attractiveness of the design. It is very important to understand children's preference for fields and the demand for physical activity. Proper game equipment configuration and field planning can increase children's physical activity. We should also give back the past research on parents and children to the designers and balance it with the government. Designers stimulate children's creative potential and let them to participate in the design, so that designers and governments can reach a balance while meeting the needs of parents and children.
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