Places of play

Kuva: Teuvo Kanerva, Museovirasto.
Teuvo Kanerva, Museovirasto.
Collection of written memories concerning playgrounds from 1 September 2021 to 31 January 2022

What kinds of playground-related memories do you have? Did you spend time in playgrounds as a child, or do you visit them now as an adult with your own children? Have you worked as a playground attendant, playleader, or professional playground designer? We would like to receive stories from past and present playground users, parents, playground employees and playground environment planners. Tell us your story!

This writing collection is arranged in celebration of the upcoming 110th anniversary of organised playground activities in Finland. We aim to illustrate the history and present state of playgrounds and their significance to children and adults.

The following questions might help in the writing process:

As a child in a playground

  • What were your favourite playgrounds like? Where were they? What did you do and how did you play there? What kinds of equipment were there? What was forbidden, what was allowed?
  • At what age did you visit playgrounds? Who was with you? How did you go there?
  • Describe your sensory memories from the playgrounds: How did it look, feel, smell and sound?
  • Tell us about the adults present in the playground and organised playground activities.

As an adult in a playground

  • How significant a role have playgrounds had in your family’s life?
  • How often have you been visiting playgrounds? What is a good playground like? How could they be improved?
  • What do playgrounds have to offer for an adult?

Working in a playground

  • Tell us about your playground work. What is the everyday work in a playground like? Tell us about the children in playgrounds.Which values have guided your work? What is the role of parents like?
  • Tell us about your work as a designer of environments for children. Which regulations have guided your work? Have you been able to use your creativity? What is a good playground environment like?
  • What is the future of playgrounds?

Please tell us the town and the decade to which you refer in your story. You can also send us photos and drawings.

The collection is organised by the Finnish Literature Society (SKS) in cooperation with postdoctoral researcher Essi Jouhki (University of Jyväskylä) and doctoral researcher Veera Moll (Aalto University). The collected memories will be archived in the SKS archive and the Finnish Social Science Data Archive. The results of the collection will be published in spring 2022. Those who send their stories will participate in a draw of book prizes.

Further information:
SKS archive, tel. +358 201 131 240,
Essi Jouhki,
Veera Moll,

Answering instructions

Please write in your own language and style. The length of the texts is not restricted. We also accept photographs, recordings, videos, previous memoirs and interviews. Please only send material if you have the right and/or permission to send such material. We ask you to give consent for archiving the material in the SKS archive and for its use in accordance with the rules of the archive. In addition, we ask you to give consent for disclosing the material to the Finnish Social Science Data Archive so that it can process and use the material for research, teaching and studying purposes.

Please, read the instructions concerning disclosure and SKS archive guidelines.

Please submit your text by 31 January 2022

  • using the form below or
  • by post to the following address: Finnish Literature Society (SKS), archive, P.O. Box 259, FI-00171 Helsinki.
    • Please, mark the envelope with “Places of play”.
    • Include your consent for archiving the material in the SKS archive under your name or pen name, as well as your contact and background information. You can use the attached form.
If your answer exceeds 5 000 characters, attach the answer as a text file.
Your background information is important for the use of material. Background information given on this form will be linked to your answer.
SKS stores the recorded material and makes it available for public use in accordance with SKS’s mission. SKS’s mission is to promote, study and publicise Finnish culture. SKS processes personal data related to the collected material for archival purposes that serve the public interest in accordance with the EU General Data Protection Regulation (2016/679) and the Data Protection Act (1050/2018). The collected material, its cataloguing information and the related personal data will be stored permanently for archival purposes, and they can be made freely available under the valid SKS archive guidelines to the extent allowed by law. When processing personal data for archival purposes that serve the public interest, the data subject’s rights described in the General Data Protection Regulation do not apply as a rule.

For further information about the processing of personal data, please visit our website.
More information about the use of material.

If you have questions about the processing of personal data and the use of material, please contact the customer service team of the SKS archive.

The providing of contact information is voluntary. We ask you to give us your contact information, because there will be a book prize draw from among all those who have answered. In addition, we will process the respondents’ information for future reference, e.g. for research purposes or to require copyright permission, because we need your consent to publish the material or use it in presentations. If the material that you send to us is archived under a pen name, we will delete your contact information after the prize draw. Then, it will be possible to cite the material but it cannot be published as a whole.