Play School 50 cent collector coins

To celebrate 50 years of Play School on Australian television, The Royal Australian Mint in Canberra has released a three-coin set of Play School themed 50 cent pieces.

The colourful 50 cent coins featuring Jemima, Big Ted, Little Ted and Humpty will not be in general circulation, but are available for collectors to buy directly from the Mint, or by phoning 1300 652 020. But you may have to get in quickly, as more than 2000 sets have been ordered already.

play school coins

Photo: The Royal Australian Mint

The coins were designed by Bronwyn King, in collaboration with a team of designers and graphic artists, and make a lovely keepsake for children, or anyone who grew up with Play School.

First airing in 1966, Play School is the longest-running children’s television show in Australia and has remained popular across the generations. You can watch a snippet from the first episode here.

The ABC has made approximately 2250 episodes of Play School, all with an emphasis on learning through play and encouraging children to wonder, think, feel and imagine.

Through music, crafts, stories, games and “looking through the windows”, this iconic show has remained engaging and relevant across the decades.

It has also amassed some impressive statistics:

  • Play School currently airs four times per weekday on ABC KIDS and anytime on ABC iview
  • Since 2001, more than one million children have attended a live Play School concert
  • Forty-five percent of Australian parents with a pre-schooler own a Play School product, such as a book, toy or DVD
  • Play School apps – Art Maker and Play Time – have had more than 90 million sessions and 550 million screen views since their release in 2011
Presenter Jan Kingsbury on set with the windows, which have been part of the Play School routine the program began. Presenter John Hamblin is pictured with Humpty, one of the show's original toys. Image © Australian Broadcasting Corporation 2016

Presenter Jan Kingsbury on set with the windows, which have been part of the Play School routine the program began in 1966. Presenter John Hamblin is pictured with Humpty, one of the show’s original toys.
Image © Australian Broadcasting Corporation 2016

Toys are part of the family. Image © Australian Broadcasting Corporation 2016

Toys are part of the family.
Image © Australian Broadcasting Corporation 2016

Presenters past and present (clockwise from back left) Colin Buchanan, Andrew McFarlane, Don Spencer, Benita Collings, Luke Carroll, John Waters, Teo Gebert, Karen Pang, Jan Kingsbury, John Hamblin, Lorraine Bayly, Simon Burke and Emma Palmer. Image © Australian Broadcasting Corporation 2016

Presenters past and present (clockwise from back left) Colin Buchanan, Andrew McFarlane, Don Spencer, Benita Collings, Luke Carroll, John Waters, Teo Gebert, Karen Pang, Jan Kingsbury, John Hamblin, Lorraine Bayly, Simon Burke and Emma Palmer.
Image © Australian Broadcasting Corporation 2016

And now Play School can add a Royal Australian Mint coin collection to its list of achievements and honours.

To find out more, visit The Royal Australian Mint web site. For more Play School fun, you can visit their web site for games, videos, craft inspiration and recipes. Plus there’s an exhibition at the National Museum of Australia if you can get along.

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Cath Johnsen

If you drop in on Cath at home, you’re likely to find her household in a state of happy chaos. She loves reading, being outdoors and travelling with her husband and three children. When she’s not spending time with family, Cath is indulging her love of writing at Be a Fun Mum… She knew that journalism degree would come in handy one day!

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