My younger brother, Marco, is a bit unusual. He’s insanely switched on for his age – if I’m honest, even for my age. He just gets things, especially when they have to do with spatial reasoning. I think he could end up having a really sick artistic streak if he keeps working on his self-confidence. And he doesn’t take much of an interest in sports, which I’m totally down with. I do, however, think he could benefit from having more physical activity in his life.
I’ve been trying to get him interested in the play equipment at our local park, but he’s not buying it on account of the weather at the moment (it’s been crazy hot). Still, I think that the opportunity for novel spatial interaction that playground presents would be cool for him – climbing up things, sliding down other things, judging the distance between monkey bars and mapping those activities onto the moving body. (Can you tell I’m a Pilates instructor?)
Anyway, I’ve just found out that there’s such thing as an indoor play centre for kids – I’m talking playground equipment made really big, and translated into versions of it you could only have in a controlled indoor environment. I’m talking huge ball pits, merry go rounds and bouncy inflatable surfaces. I think some of them might have electronic games, too, which in Marco’s case will be a drawcard but also something I’ll probably need to pry him away from.
I just need to figure out how to sell him the idea so that he doesn’t think I’m babying him. He’s only eight, so taking him on a daytrip to a kids play centre in Sydney would be absolutely age-appropriate. But he tends to pick stuff up a lot faster than his peers, so he often finds what they’re into to be kind of boring. I’ll present it to him in terms of a giant 3D game. But what’s the aim of the game? That’s what I’ll need to work out.