Every Playcentre has a story. Discover our many stories here.

  • Two enthusiastic parents from Rangiora Playcentre, Kirsty White and Gemma Grinder, have been busier than most over the past 20 weeks, walking twenty well known Canterbury tracks. Inspired by Catch Fitness’ 20 Week Challenge, they’ve also chosen to blog about their experience.
    Posted: 16/10/2017
  • Everyday, everywhere, amazing things happen at Playcentre. Online media - whether Twitter, Facebook or WordPress - means that all of our stories can be shared easily, both within our own communities and beyond.
    Posted: 28/9/2017
  • While some Playcentres choose to employ a paid coordinator, others rely on the leadership of a group of dedicated parent volunteers. One Playcentre thriving through such leadership is Rolleston.
    Posted: 9/9/2017
  • In the July school holidays - when the weather was particularly miserable and most people were shuttered up inside - a group of Landsdowne Terrace Playcentre families opted for something a little bolder, a trip together into the Canterbury foothills.
    Posted: 25/8/2017
  • For many families with young children, Playcentre is a much loved part of everyday life. For parents it provides a community, a support network, and a steadfast sense of belonging. For tamariki, it’s one of the few places where they can meet, play and explore freely.
    Posted: 8/8/2017
  • The chances of having twins are about 1 in 33. The chances of having three sets of twins in the same small Playcentre are considerably more remote. At Lincoln Playcentre, however, this phenomenon is a weekly occurrence.
    Posted: 1/8/2017
  • Ten year old Tessa Marshall is a shining example of the influence Playcentre can have, even long after early childhood has been left behind.
    Posted: 21/7/2017
  • Dunsandel is a tiny farming town on the Canterbury Plains, just south of the Selwyn River. Because the local population is so small, sustaining the Playcentre takes a lot of effort. But that didn’t stop Dunsandel from putting in a stunning 17km leg in the recent Greatest Game of Tag. Katharine, the secretary at Dunsandel Playcentre, describes some of her experiences belonging to such a small centre.
    Posted: 30/6/2017
  • Earlier this month I was lucky enough to visit South Brighton Playcentre’s recently established Thursday bilingual session. I was curious to know how it differed from other Playcentre sessions, and hoped to be inspired by the truly bicultural partnership happening there.
    Posted: 19/6/2017
  • Last week St Albans Playcentre hosted an timely play workshop. Promoted as an ‘Inspiration for Matariki’, the session was themed around the celebration and facilitated by Jen Wells from the Canterbury Playcentre Association.
    Posted: 11/6/2017
  • Traditionally dads have made up a minority of parents on session. Oxford Playcentre dad and centre Co-president, Salvo, is one of many fathers actively changing this. His enthusiasm for Playcentre is boundless, and he’s keen to see more dads get involved.
    Posted: 1/6/2017
  • Christchurch’s Playcentre shop is tucked away in a quiet-ish corner of Sydenham. I popped in on a miserably cold Autumn afternoon thinking that I would peruse the shelves, chat to the staff, and leave ready to write a sweet little story about the experience. I’ve always been a fan, there’s no denying that. I could write a long list of reasons to go there without thinking twice. However this time I came away from my not-so-brief visit with a much deeper appreciation for the shop and its valuable role in the Canterbury Playcentre community.
    Posted: 23/5/2017
  • Communities are built and strengthened through the sharing of kai. Whether it’s something made at home, or something snatched from the shelves of the supermarket in a hurry, the gift of food is always appreciated. There’s no better time to share food than in a period of transition and need. At Playcentre, providing home cooked meals to families with newborns reduces the stress so that everyone can focus on making the new addition feel welcome.
    Posted: 8/5/2017
  • Those of you who participated in Canterbury Playcentre association’s recent event The Greatest Game of Tag may have noticed the korowai, the ceremonial Māori cloak, being passed from one centre representative's shoulders to the next as the game proceeded across Canterbury. Intrigued by the korowai’s splendour and significance I asked its creator, Jackie Wadsworth from Kaikoura Playcentre, about it.
    Posted: 30/4/2017
  • Talofa lava, kia orana, fakaalofa lahi atu, talofa ni, mālō e lelei, ni sa bula, greetings, tēnā koutou katoa!
    Posted: 10/4/2017
  • Tag: a childhood game of playfulness, speed and cunning. Pouncing out from behind door frames and fences, bounding across open spaces, grass stained knees, all accompanied by screeches of laughter and cries of ‘you’re it’. These are also things I associate with Playcentre.
    Posted: 3/4/2017
  • Inspired by a blog post shared on their facebook page, members of Rangiora Playcentre recently decided to make a sensory walkway for their centre. With the help of the Playcentre community and the generosity of Woodend Nursery, they’ve since created something truly special. Playcentre parent Esther Small filled me in on the details of the project.
    Posted: 28/3/2017
  • At Playcentre we celebrate the involvement of parents but what about the grandparents who also attend sessions? Whether supporting the occasional fundraiser or as important caregivers and regular attendees, many grandparents play a significant role in our organisation.
    Posted: 21/3/2017
  • On the first, thankfully warm, day of autumn six Playcentres from across the city opted to do a little offsite exploring together. Avonhead Playcentre had put out an invitation to join them at Cave Rock, Sumner for their regular ‘Wild Wednesday’ explorer session. Always keen for an outdoor adventure, Elliott and I tagged along.
    Posted: 4/3/2017
  • Nestled beside the picturesque Akaroa harbour, Akaroa Playcentre provides a place of connection for families originating in every corner of the globe. I recently touched base with Erin Neufeld about her experiences being part of this special Playcentre community.
    Posted: 23/2/2017
  • Over the last week or so, the Canterbury Playcentre Association has been delivering jars of baking ingredients to local centres. Contained in the jars is almost everything needed to create magic Playcentre bliss balls, a delicious and easily made raw snack. The idea is to inspire some delectable play and to promote The Greatest Game of Tag, which is part of upcoming Playcentre Awareness Week events. Leah from St Albans Playcentre filled me in on the magic that went down at their centre earlier in the week.
    Posted: 17/2/2017