questions about kids' space in common house
From: Ccarpent (
Date: Mon, 29 Jul 1996 17:49:37 -0500
Hi all,

I'm another voice from Cambridge Cohousing, only a lurker to date, but I'm
looking for some information and advice today.  We're working on the design
of our common house and I'd love to hear from folks about the kinds of
children's space you have in your common house, and how it's worked.

Do you have a space designed primarily for toddlers and preschoolers,
school-age kids, or teenagers?  Do you have separate spaces for different age
groups?  Do the different aged kids mingle much?  Do you use the space(s) for
formal childcare arrangements, playgroups, or just casual play while in the
common house?  Can/do kids go the area by themselves, or only when
accompanied by parents?

Is the space adjacent to the dining room and/or kitchen or farther away?  If
it's near, do parents find closeness to the dining room/kitchen useful when
eating or cooking?  Does the community as a whole find the children's area
disruptive during meals?

What features (sink, reading area, indoor climber, etc.) in your children's
area are most used/most unused?

If you had it to do again, what would you do the same?  differently?

We will probably end up with about 20 - 25 kids, from 40 households.  The
kids currently range from 1 - 12 years old.  As you can see, we have lots of
households that *don't* have children, typically older singles or couples.
  We need to create a design that families with children will find attractive
and useful, while ensuring that households without children don't feel that
that the common house is dominated by children.

Thanks in advance for your input.  I know we'll find it very valuable!
- Cindy Carpenter
ccarpent [at] 

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