Reading books in a classroom setting are great for the development of the cognitive and even social skills of children but outdoor games do it even better. The times are changing and children are picking up skills in ways that are totally different now than it was in the past.
This article explores the latest trends for outdoor play structures and describe how they mould a child’s experiences, skills and character. Some of these new trends incorporate technology into playground equipment, others encourage the reconnection to nature.
Climbing is an excellent all-round sport for children. Although, it’s ideal for older children with well-developed muscles and fine motor skills, it can be adapted to the needs of younger kids as well. Climbing compels children to learn hand, feet and eye coordination while developing their focus concentration, critical thinking skills and mental resilience. Children are free to set their own personal goals, they can climb as high as they want but they are also pushed to go beyond self-imposed limits.
Outdoor Tech Equipment
Today’s children spend less time playing outdoors and the abundant technology play devices on the market like ipads, computers and video games are to blame. Technology companies are however stepping up to the plate and coming up with new and creative tech games to encourage outdoor play. Many of these games integrate technology in fun games that test coordination, speed and reflex while encouraging physical activity and inspiring imagination.
Gaming companies like Hybrid play and TP toys are creating new games that encourage student to step outdoors and play fun tech games designed to inspire their imagination while connecting them to nature.
Family Play Structures
Parents get less time to play with their kids these days. Both parents work full-time jobs, they come back home exhausted, fix an easy dinner for the kids and force them to go to bed. When there’s a bit of time for play, parents find it easy to encourage independent play by giving their kids video games and toys.
Family play structures are however, changing this trend. These are mostly outdoor structures with large playsets and games that children can play with their parents. This inclusive play equipment may include zip lines, trampolines, swings and slides. It’s a recreation space for all ages and fun for both parents and children.
Rope netting and rope bridges add more fun to any outdoor playground. They are famous for their ability to develop the balance of children and enhance muscle development. Rope courses in playgrounds are also slowly gaining popularity. Children learn to conquer their fear of heights and learn more advanced climbing techniques that require focus, concentration and strong cognitive skills.
Recent outdoor structures attempt to integrate features like sound puzzles and tactile experiences to challenge the cognitive skills of children and fine motor skills. Outdoor games like The Scoopwhich is an interactive and full-coloured wooden puzzle which imitates the sound of a tool when it’s placed in the right peg on the puzzle board is a great game to the auditory processing skills of children.
All of these innovations offer several options for parents and early childhood specialists to raise creative and intelligent children. Feel free to allow your kids to explore as many of these options as possible.