School payground design competition

Mike Page's picture
Authored by Mike Page
Posted Monday, November 25, 2019 - 6:54am

The TPDAL school playground competition is currently open to submissions. Let’s learn more about this playground design competition, the purpose of it and the organization behind it. 

What is the purpose of the TDPAL playground competition? 

The playground competition helps TPDAL connect with many potential clients. However, the main benefit of the competition is that it engages children in the design of their world. They learn that don’t have to be adults to make a difference, and TDPAL learns from kids what they really want. The winner of last year’s competition was six year old from St Mary Prittlewell’s school. The school received attention when they won and again when the playground was installed. It is an excellent opportunity to show off the creativity and impact of your students. 

Who Sponsors the Competition? 

TPDAL is the group sponsoring it. The term is an acronym for Thermoplastic Design and Lines, a company specializing in marking playgrounds. They have created non-toxic playground marking products that last eight to ten times as long as paint. Whether you have hopscotch outlines or jogging trails marked out, they offer it at an affordable price. They provide everything from fitness markings to educational designs for inclusion on playground surfaces to maxes to roadways. For example, you could put a colorful grid with numbers 1 through 100 on the playground. Children will learn the information as they play. Or you can turn a large parking lot into a pretend city for children on scooters or create engaging physical activity sessions where kids follow pre-determined flow plans. They have more than fifteen years in the industry. 

What exactly is the TPDAL playground design competition? 

The TPDAL design competition is encouraging hundreds of schools to participate in the only playground design competition in the UK. Why would schools go to the effort? They could win a free playground game designed by one of the students. The estimated value is five thousand pounds. The school itself will get quite a bit of exposure. TPDAL would promote the contest and its winner. The mainstream press and industry publications will hear about the winning school, and your reputation as a child-friendly preschool, daycare, or elementary school will increase. For example, last year’s winner was featured in the Basildon Standard, Echo News and Thurrock Gazzette. This competition engages the kids in the design of their school, and it is a great way to teach the kids about engineering and STEM. They have the opportunity to be creative and may see their results come to life in the real world.  What if your submission isn’t chosen? Just by participating, you get 10 percent off anything TDPAL offers. This is their incentive to attract a wide array of submissions. And your kids will enjoy the experience while learning quite a bit. 

What are the rules? 

All entries have to have a color drawing of the game TPDAL would be installing. The submission has to describe the game itself and the rules for playing. The submission must be sent in a digital format along with the child’s name, age and school. Note that you can take a digital picture or scan of what they drew on paper and send that in. Only one submission is allowed per child and three maximum per school. The organization gets copyright ownership of the design and concept. That means the design you submit may end up at other schools.