Outdoor Learning Space for Kids Breaks Ground In South Valley

UNM Planning Students, the Partnership for Community Action, and Working Classroom break ground on innovative play garden focused on brain development and early learning

The Partnership for Community Action (PCA) will break ground this Saturday, May 2, at 9am on Colibrí, an interactive children’s play garden. Colibrí is the result of collaboration between UNM Architecture and Planning students, the Partnership for Community Action and Working Classroom. The interactive open space will be built over the course of the weekend on .25 acres at 722 Isleta Blvd SW, and the design was developed by students in UNM’s BA in Environmental Planning and Design. Colibrí Children’s Play Garden will offer a place where children and families can explore early literacy, math, science, music and art through dynamic processes of engaged learning and interactive play structures.

This new space incorporates brain science and early childhood development into open space design. By building creative interactive spaces, informed by partnerships with Explora, Sandia National Labs, Working Classroom and UNM, PCA seeks to support families and the early development of children during the most critical years.



Brain science tells us that ninety percent of a child’s brain develops before the age of six. Yet we as a society have not responded adequately to this relatively new research. Colibrí Children’s Play Garden is a significant step to increase quality interaction between families and young children in open/recreation spaces. The garden will help families gain more of an understanding of the importance of the first five years of a child’s brain development and will increase the quality of play/learn activities for children in an open, recreational space.

“The power of high-quality early learning that is engaged with adults sparks children’s creativity and imagination and gives them the skills they need to be ready to learn when they go to school.” Said Adrián Pedroza, executive director of the Partnership for Community Action and President Obama appointee to the national Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanics. “But there is a lack of spaces in Albuquerque that encourage adult interaction with young children. Many of the existing open and recreational spaces encourage our kids to play alone without engaging in learning or interaction with parents. We are excited to create an open space that incorporates the play/learn models we see in innovative spaces such as Explora and the Santa Fe Children’s Museum.

The Partnership for Community Action has made a substantial investment in the revitalization and development of their property. The full property will be developed over the next 1.5 years to become a center where families, neighborhoods and institutions can come together to create enduring relationships, develop collective leadership, design innovative solutions and advocate for a stronger New Mexico.

The Colibrí Children’s Play Garden was made possible by a PNM Power-Up Grant.

WHAT: Colibrí Children’s Play Garden Groundbreaking and Build Day

WHEN: May 2, 2015, 9:00AM to 5:00PM

WHERE: Partnership for Community Action, 722 Isleta Blvd SW

Who: Partnership for Community Action, Working Classroom, UNM School of Architecture Environmental Planning and Design program

About the Partnership for Community Action The Partnership for Community Action works to build strong, healthy communities throughout New Mexico by investing in people and families, helping people to become strong leaders in our neighborhoods and in our state.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.