The past generations had unforgettable memories from their childhood - they were playing in the tree houses. Only now they understand how dangerous it was. From another hand, it was a good option for busy parents.
Kids want to play all the time, but parents don’t have an opportunity to go to the park every day. Also, public playgrounds can be very stressful: there are a lot of people, so it is difficult to supervise your kid. In the last few years building the natural playgrounds in the backyards became a very popular solution.
Parents who decided to build own playgrounds claim to be satisfied and more relaxed. Their kids can play, develop their imagination and creativity. More than that, they learn how to share with their friends and cousins. Another benefit of having a playground in your background is that it is a convenient form of exercise for kids. It is essential in the time of electronic devices and social media. So, unplug your children and let them have fun!
Here is everything you need to know about building a safe and environmentally friendly playground for your Pumpkin Pie:
Choose the right materials
Kids love licking and touching everything, so you need to make sure all the materials on your playground are non-toxic. You need to stay clear of volatile organic compounds and polyvinyl chloride - these materials are considered harmful. If you are looking for surface materials, you can choose artificial grass, wood chips, rubber mulch, and engineered wood fibre. If you want to make the eco-friendly playground, request recycled materials. First of all, they will last longer. Secondly, they are easier to maintain.
Make a plan
Ask your kids what they want to see in their playground. It is an opportunity to build a bridge between you and your children. Show them that their ideas are important and let them take part in the whole process. It will teach your kids that everything is possible, they just need to work for this. Think what skills you want your child to develop. For example, they can work on their balance, coordination, fine motor skills (by climbing and jumping). When you build an outdoor playground, also think of other kids that might join. Don’t forget to build something for yourself as well- reading on the swing after a hard working day can be pretty relaxing.
There is no need to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on the playground in your backyard. You can be creative and use things you already have around the house. For example, you can make a sandbox out of the old boat or recycle your old tires and make a swing. Feel free to leave some old toys - dinosaurs in the grass will look amazing! Other cheap options include bug hotel, hammock, bird feeder, twister, in-ground trampoline, backyard tent, and chalkboard.
You can also do some gardening with your kids, so they can practise locomotor skills and learn about the plants. Don’t get too attached to your little garden though. That’s the area for your kids; they can easily destroy everything.
The good thing is that you can do anything you want in your backyard. You can build a playground with a bridge, swings gazebo and slide. Don’t forget about the climbing wall since it is an excellent way for your kids to practice their hiking skills - even two-years-old babies can do it! In this case, you will need to watch out for your kids. If you don’t want them to climb without you, you can cover the climbing wall with tarps.
If you still have some space in your backyard, you can set up an outdoor movie area. Additionally, you will need a projector, old pillows, picnic blankets and your laptop. Tell your kids that it is open only in the evenings so they won’t have the temptation to watch cartoons during the day.
What to avoid
Don’t buy anything plastic, it might stay in your backyard for years. If you want to build sandbox, swing set or slide, choose wood. It is environmentally friendly, and you can easily paint it with your kids. Avoid ropes, rocks, glass and finger-trapping gaps. Try to choose playground equipment that will not become sweltering. Otherwise, it may cause burns. Make sure you build slide and all metal constructions in the shadow. Another thing to think about is a slip-free surface. It can prevent injuries in the summer when kids play with the water guns.