Planning the Perfect Playground – Keeping Fun and Safety First
When you are planning a playground in your own backyard or in your schools yard, there are a few very important topics to keep in mind. The result will be a very safe and fun environment for the kids to play in.
Child Development Experts see this as a place where kids build a large range of both physical and emotional skills. Remember kids think completely different than we do! The playground could become a racetrack, an obstacle course, or even the jungle. This playground equipment is a place for kid’s imaginations to blossom and grow as well as develop both motor and physical skills. Here are a few of the important topics and trends the experts use to help you become informed about the value of a playground.
Free Play is by far one of the most important things you can provide. Kids today have too many choices between soccer, hockey, gymnastics, dancing, music lessons, clubs, computer games, and 100 channels on your television. Where does a playground fit in? Adults still believe the best experiences are the ones that are directed entirely by adults. With Free Play kids become more spontaneous and creative. This is when they have the freedom to play together, without adult intervention. With kids being involved in organized activity, there is no Free Play or opportunity for expression of themselves. Playground equipment promotes Free Play. In return this Free Play will develop social skills, confidence, and self-esteem. Remember always allowing Free Play is critical to the development of kids. Make time in your schedule for Free Play.
Another really important aspect is to start thinking a little more like a kid. What would they like to play on? What would they think is really cool? Most playgrounds include ladders, slides, and swings. These pieces may not be exactly what you are looking for, but there is plenty to choose from. Age appropriate equipment is really important. This will develop their strength and coordination. You will want to make sure the playground encourages improvement in their skill level, and meets all SAFETY STANDARDS. Of course the cost needs to fit into your budget as well. Most important though is that they are going to have fun first, the rest will follow.
Let the kids help in the process of choosing the playground that best suits the ages and grades. Perhaps there’s a color they like or design that has the equipment they would really enjoy. Their participation in this will always ensure it is loved by themselves and their friends. Remember what adults find exciting, often gets little attention from the kids.