Friday, August 10, 2012

The Necessary Features and Components of A Viable Playground

How would you classify the play equipment at your local park? Is it safe? Appropriate for the age of your kids? Fun, sleek, and sturdily designed? What about the features of the park itself? Is it well thought out? Are there plenty of picnic tables, drinking fountains, waste receptacles, pathway barriers, soccer nets, and shaded benches? Are there grills for a barbeque, pleasantly flowered planter boxes, and bike racks?

So Many Different Details

It takes a lot to make a great park or playground, and the aforementioned features are just the beginning. There are so many aspects to that safe and fun experience that everyone wants, yet those in charge of the planning and execution of park and school playgrounds all too often miss the mark. This may be due to the fact that they forget what it was like to be a kid, or maybe they’re out of touch with what parents’ primary concerns are in regard to their children’s safety and enjoyment of the outdoors. Whatever the case, you may want to consider a few points yourself that you may not have thought of before. It’s never too late to start educating yourself on such topics, after all.

Is It Age Appropriate?

Foremost, when looking at different types of kids play equipment, you have to consider whether or not it’s age appropriate. The types of play equipment designed for elementary-aged kids are neither safe nor engaging in the right ways for children in the preschool age range. A small child could fall off a steep, twisted slide or be afraid of it to begin with. A jungle gym is not suitable for little children prone to losing their balance or falling. And play equipment with little whirligigs, small tunnels, and short slides is neither age appropriate or safe for a larger child. They would not be stimulated by what the equipment has to offer and their weight and height could affect the integrity of the structure and compromise their own safety.

Meeting Safety Standards

Kids play equipment for schools especially needs to be age appropriate and meet several safety standards. No principal or teacher wants a lawsuit on account of a child being injured on the playground. What they want is the safety and engagement of their students in their activities. They also want to ensure the functionality, cleanliness and overall viability of their play yard, investing in accoutrements such as lunch tables, waste receptacles, shaded benches, and drinking fountains. These things must be thought through carefully and then implemented only when all considerations have been made.

Eric Blair writes about play equipment for schools and play areas for children provided by ParknPool.

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