Coeducational patios to end the tyranny of football

Traditionally, schoolyards in educational centers have tended to be designed around the practice of sport and, very specifically, the practice of sports as specific as basketball and soccer , especially the latter. This means that open spaces are designed in schools formed by an unavoidable soccer field and basketball court, often reducing the most generalized playground or space for student recreation to a minimum.

This way of designing school recreational spaces leads to the perpetuation of clichés, such as the idea that playing soccer is the most “great” activity there is and that those who do not like it are isolated in spaces where that many more dynamic activities cannot be done . This way of thinking about spaces harms all boys, but especially girls, since it leads to segregation by sex and discrimination against those students who are not so good or who do not have as much ability for this type of activity.

For this reason, the Ministry of Education of the Valencian Community (Spain) published last year a decree aimed at the necessary redistribution of outdoor spaces in schools , in order to eliminate barriers and make them suitable for all types of boys and girls and, above all, to promote a much more dynamic and enriching interaction between students.


patios coeducativos



Fight the soccer dictatorship with coeducational spaces

The application of this measure does not mean that football is denied, but it would be interesting to also promote other types of activities (related if you want to gross motor skills) but that cover many more tastes, interests and that prioritize the game among all and in equal footing.

When a school is traditionally colonized by soccer fields, what is known as the dictatorship of the ball is created in schools , a dynamic that generates discrimination between classes, between those who like soccer and enjoy ball games and those who do not. they do it or they are not too skilled for them. This kind of tyranny to which little thoughtful design leads and based on the need to have co-educational patios to combat differences and stereotypes , focuses more on the practice of ball games than on the general needs and interests of children and girls

When the ball becomes the king of the schoolyard, wealth and creativity are impeded, it is encouraged that the playground is colonized by ball games with children actively invading the space and sometimes aggressively, since the means of Communication is also in charge of inflaming the taste of many children for this activity as something competitive and very lucrative, and not so much as a simple game and healthy sport.




This vision and design of the structure of a playground is not positive, as it excludes and monopolizes a space, also relegating girls to a secondary role for the most part, as well as other children who enjoy more playing clapping games or hide and seek . That is why school recreation spaces should be restructured by incorporating drawings on the floor of the usual games that allow greater socialization among all students and among all interests, making the space divided (it is not about eliminating sports or specific practices) , be differentiated and democratized.


How to Design a Good School Playground

Running, swinging, climbing, jumping, jumping, biking, digging in the sand… outdoor fun is a favorite part of any young child’s day, but whether the experience can be completely enriching depends on the schools. A good school playground should have enough space for movement and well-designed, sturdy equipment so that boys and girls can use their imaginations while exercising. For example, the space can be designed with gymnastic structures in the shape of a jungle, bars that represent fire stations, tunnels for crawling … children, with the use of these types of structures, can develop multiple skills and create dozens of scenarios while They play as a team, so they are undoubtedly excellent ideas to democratize the space and to give priority to all the needs and stages of development of childhood and not so much to specific games that impoverish the acquisition of skills in greater numbers and more global .




The schoolyard should be a space that invites socialization and fun , and that never becomes a “zone of punishment” or suffering for other boys and / or girls with different sensitivities, tastes or abilities.

Change is in our hands and making children take advantage and enjoy the space that surrounds them in their day to day at school.

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