There are so many health benefits, both mentally and physically, that your children get from playing in the great outdoors. The fresh air is not only healthy for them, but it tires them out and gives the inside of your house a chance to breathe – and you the chance to tidy up. Not only this, but on those hot summer afternoons, when they’re off for their long six week holiday, you’ll want a space that all of the family can enjoy together. With just a few simple tips, you can easily ensure that your garden is a safe and fun environment for all of the family to enjoy.
We’ll start with the boring stuff. Because none of us have eyes in the back of our heads, we’ll want to create a safe environment for our kids to play in, even when we have to pop inside for two minutes. Make sure your garden is well fenced or walled and protected from your little ones running out, especially if you live near a main road. If it’s a wall you have enclosing your garden, you’ll want to ensure that it’s safe, regardless of what your kids do to it. You can discourage your kids as much as you want from climbing on the garden wall, but chances are they’re going to try their luck as the little adventurers they are, and at the very least you can make sure the wall is sturdy and secure, especially if it’s been standing a long time. Consider hiring a repointing specialist such as https://www.repointingspecialist.co.uk/ to ensure that all of the brickwork and stonework in your garden is safe and secure – even if it ends up being climbed on! You’ll also want to ensure that any ponds are covered, that there’s a soft surface for them to run around on, and that your plants won’t be poisonous to the inquisitive toddler who decides to taste them!
Invest in Some Fun Summer Play Equipment
If you don’t already own them, go shopping for some fun and safe outdoor play equipment that will keep your little ones entertained all summer long. Of course, consider their ages and their safety before choosing, but be assured that there is something for all ages!
Inflatable ball pools and paddling pools are great for kids to play in over the summer, as are net protected trampolines, small slides, and swing balls – just make sure you’re supervising on that one! On a hot day, even create your own miniature water park, by placing the slide so it goes into the paddling pool and investing in a slip and slide! Even if you can’t afford a summer holiday this year, it doesn’t mean that your little ones can’t have a great day of fun in the sun.
Make it a Learning Environment
Six weeks is a long time to be off school, so get your little ones interested in learning about the outdoors as well as playing in it. Consider starting a family project of growing your very own fruit or vegetable patch, making sure the kids are heavily involved. There’s nothing to worry about if you don’t have loads of space – there are fruits and vegetables that thrive in even the smallest of spaces if they’re looked after well. Not only is this a great way of teaching your kids about growing their own produce and giving them responsibility, but chances are it’ll encourage them to eat the veggies they’ve actually grown themselves! It’s a really effective and fun way of encouraging your little ones to eat their greens.
While you’re at it, encourage wildlife to visit your garden. Invest in a bird bath and/or a bird feeder to encourage all sorts of birds into your garden, and plant some wildflowers to encourage bees and butterflies! However make sure to cover up your veggie patch, because not only will your kids love it, but the wildlife will too!
Create a Shaded Relax and Play Area
Finally, don’t forget that in the long sunny days, your child will need some rest from the sun and some time in the shade, so make sure that there is an area they can happily go to when it’s needed. A small table with a parasol is a great addition to your garden, as it creates a space where kids can do relaxing activities such as drawing, board games, or watching films on a portable player, as well as a place for them to eat their lunch/snacks and to have a drink to keep hydrated. Remember that playing outside in the warmer temperatures, however fun, is exhausting for your little one, so they’ll need a tranquil little chill out space to rejuvenate between activities.