Skip Navigation Links
Kerry Logan "Children at play are not playing about. Their games should be seen as their most serious-minded activity."

Michel de Montaigne
(French essayist 1533-1592)

Kerry Logan – Outdoor Play Consultant

Qualifications

Bachelor of Social Science (Community Studies)

My background

Growing up in the 1960s and 70s, I spent endless hours playing outdoors – helping in the vegie garden, riding my bike around the neighbourhood, collecting tadpoles, raising frogs, climbing trees, harvesting mulberries, hours and hours of unsupervised play. Holidays were nearly always to visit cousins in the wheatbelt and full of kid-only picnics on the top of the hill in the back paddock, playing in the creek, gathering mushrooms and scary visits to the haunted old farm house near the shearing shed.

My professional interest in outdoor play began in 2002 when I joined the PlaySafe Advisory Association team in 2002 and became my focus again when I joined Kidsafe WA’s Playground Advisory Service in 2009. The more I researched, the more I believed that outdoor play provision of recent decades actually inhibits quality play opportunities and therefore does little to support children’s learning, development, health & wellbeing. I agree with a colleague who proposed that our attitudes to and understanding of ‘play’ and how we provide for it are a litmus test of our attitude to children and teens in general; and to wider notions of what it is to be an autonomous choice-maker.

I have a strong belief that public open spaces are also a site of intersection for a wide variety of issues – child and community development, community safety and wellbeing, conservation and environment, connection to place and country, habitat protection, intergenerational social connectedness, universal access and inclusion, as well as PLAY – such that design and development of these spaces require a multi-disciplinary approach to challenge our perceptions of childhood, outdoor play and playspace design and inspire a change in thinking about the Nature of Play.

Being part of the Nature Play Solutions team is a wonderfully enriching experience. As well as being part of a truly unique group of professionals, I meet lots of passionate teachers, parents, local government teams and community members and get to share their journey of change and the positive impact on children.

Memberships

Play Australia (WA Organiser), International Play Association, Early Childhood Australia, Council of Educational Facilities Planners International (CEFPI)

Other projects undertaken by Kerry include:

  • Development of the popular Department for Communities’ What About Child Care booklet series, giving helpful advice to help families advocate for quality child care. These booklets also include guidance about quality outdoor play environments.

  • Led the Organising Committee and was the catalyst for the ‘nature play’ theme of the Kidsafe 2010 National Playground Conference: The Nature of Play.

  • In partnership with Department for Communities, produced a DVD showing interviews with children talking about their preferences in outdoor play spaces and experiences.

  • Development of the popular Messy Mud Day incursions; facilitating these fun ‘free play’ sessions at schools, child-care services and other family and community settings.

  • Development of Loose Parts Play sessions, using a diverse range of recycled and recyclable materials. These innovative sessions offer exciting opportunities for ‘free play’ provision for schools, child-care services and community settings.