The +FARM entry PLUB BLUBBLY was a winning entry for the Infill Philadelphia: Play Space How We Play Exhibition.
The competition asked designers to consider the Power of Play Space in early childhood development.
Project Team: Matei Denes, William Haskas, and Jonathan Yates
Project Location: Philadelphia, PA
Client: Community Design Collaborative - Play Space Design Competition 2015
Plub Blubbly is a layered imaginative kid-directed playland built with a nonsensical "plub" set upon a soft "blubbly" landscape. It is an environment where children choose the activities that make up their time, learning to direct themselves and elaborate on their interests. Plub Blubbly softens grade oriented praise driven schooling by engendering free play, where kids can do what they want, and the learning is the byproduct not the focus.
A "Plub" structure is a non-program space where kids learn to negotiate both their physical and social environments through play, they can gain a sense of mastery over their world, by inventing and sharing together. Inside plub there are no instructions or coaches, even adult access into the structure is difficult (though very transparent) it encourages children to engage in both physically and socially challenging situations to help them learn to control their emotions. They role play, crawl, hide, climb and only the child knows the right dose to administer - not interfering parents.
A "Blubbly" terrain is wickedly active with uneven swales and smooth landings. It is made of exterior grade foam pads that allow children to bump, and roll in unpredictable ways and there is grass to sit or kick a ball.
We believe that free play is a massive amplifier in the development and emotional growth and health of children and adults, our priority is to soften the instructed ruling of children's lives. As studies show children's free time play steadily declining and depression rising (keeping them from becoming confident adults) we recommend a daily dose of Plub Blubbly to grow their happiness.