Why Your Kids Need Some Backyard Play Space
Summer has finally turned the corner, and back-to-school time is squarely on the horizon. Even so, the warm months will still be around for a while, and your kids need something constructive to do with their free time, apart from video games and more “screen time.” It’s not that an appropriate amount of screen time is necessarily a bad thing. In the right doses and applications, spending time in front of computers, tablets, smartphones, TVs, and video games can help to stimulate children’s minds, and can even provide some important learning experiences.
But the fact of the matter is that your children are probably already getting plenty of screen time. What’s a constructive way to help limit screen time and get your kids outdoors? Carve out some backyard space for them to be able to enjoy some play time outside!
Creative Backyard Play Ideas
Here are a few ideas of some simple (yet fun!) things you can create for your children to do right in your own backyard:
Children as young as 12 months can derive a lot of enjoyment from sticking their toes in the sand. Older children dig sand too, and love to manipulate sand with various scoops, buckets, and outdoor toys.
Ø Kiddie Pool
Kids of all ages love water play, especially on a hot, sunny day. Kiddie pools are relatively inexpensive, can be reused time and time again, and offer lots of opportunities for a splashing good time!
Ø Turn on the Water Hose
Here’s another water play alternative to filling up the kiddie pool – turn on your garden hose! There are lots of fun attachments you can use, and children absolutely love running through water spray configurations in your backyard. It’s fun for your own children, and it’s a fun opportunity for inviting over the neighbors’ kids, too. Add in a slip-n-slide (it’s not hard to make your own if you don’t want to buy one), and you’re ready for hours of backyard fun!
Ø Tire Swing
If you’ve got a sturdy tree limb, a rope, and an old tire, you’ve got all the makings for a good backyard play feature. Just make sure to have an adult present whenever the kids are ready to swing, to help keep an eye on things from a safety perspective.
Ø Treehouse or Play Fort
If you’ve got the time and initiative to help put up a backyard treehouse for your kids, your labor of love could really pay some good dividends for years to come in terms of outdoor play time. Don’t have the tools, skills, or patience to go all-out with a treehouse? You can also help your kids put together their own ground-based play fort. Be creative, and use whatever materials you may have on hand – sticks, branches, PVC pipe, canvas, tarps, plywood, etc. Use your imagination, and encourage your kids to use theirs, too!
Ø Backyard Campout
Whether there’s a campground nearby or not, and whether or not your kids are ready for a true “roughing it” camping experience, you can still create your own backyard campsite. All you need is a tent and a level, soft spot in the backyard. You can do your own overnighter complete with making some smores over the fire pit, and you can use the tent for some fun daytime backyard experiences, too.
Ø Backyard Chalk Art Station
Give your kids an opportunity to flex their creative muscles by setting up an outdoor art area. Got a paved driveway? Buy some sidewalk chalk and let your kids go to town. You can also put a coat of weather-resistant outdoor chalk paint on practically any smooth surface.
Ø Just Get Outside with Your Kids
Got a basketball goal? Go outside and shoot some buckets with your kids. Throw the frisbee around. Kick a soccer ball. Take a nature walk. Just put the phone down, get in the backyard with your kids, and do something together!
Take Them to the Playground
Of course, at some point your children might appreciate being able to enjoy some special outdoor activity beyond the borders of your backyard. By all means, take them to the playground at a nearby school, park, church, or community center near you. There’s really no substitute for being able to take advantage of some well-designed, commercial-quality playground equipment. Here’s a short list of benefits for children that come along with a commercial playground experience:
Ø Encourage outdoor play
Want an effective way to get your kids’ faces out of their screens? Simply collect all of those screens, and set those kids loose on the playground! Before they know it, they’ll be having some real fun outside, and they won’t even miss not being on their screens.
Ø Benefit health & motor skills
Playgrounds get kids’ hearts pumping, stretch their limbs, move their muscles, and enable kids to take in some fresh air. On top of that, playgrounds are great for burning off excess energy, too!
Ø Develop social skills
Playground equipment teaches children to work together and cooperate. For example, you can’t seesaw by yourself! And waiting their turn to use a favorite play element can help teach children the value of patience, too.
Ø Foster mental creativity
Commercial playgrounds offer open-ended play options, which stimulate creativity and also help develop needed problem-solving skills.
Ø Provide real-world learning opportunities
Classrooms are designed for learning, but playgrounds offer some rich learning opportunities, too. Experiences gained outdoors on the playground tend to stay with children much longer than what happens in many “traditional” teaching environments.
Ø Support mental health and relieve stress
Sometimes, school, home, and life in general can be stressful for children. Enjoying physical activity on the playground can help alleviate stress, anxiety, and depression.
Get Complete Commercial Playground Solutions
Don’t have a conveniently-located playground near your house? Maybe it’s time to approach a local organization in your community and encourage them to install one. And if you’re part of a group that’s making plans to have a playground installed, your best solution in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and Tennessee is Carolina Recreation & Design! Not only do they help design and install perfect commercial playground facilities, they can even take care of site preparation, along with furnishing other needed site amenities.
Diane writes for Home Improvement, Playgrounds, Lifestyle, travel-related topics additionally; he has a passion for the recreation and design industry for more than ten years, Diane has become an experienced Redesign in this industry. His goal is to help people with his vast knowledge to assist them with his best suggestions about different activities: Playground Equipment at Club Hills – Shade Structures, Picnic Shelters.