Babies thrive in an outdoor world….
Babies have an inbuilt urge to discover the world around them, and the outdoor world in particular offers a rich environment which can feed this natural curiosity. Babies experience a very different world to adults, where the senses dominate their everyday interactions.
Here at Playgarden we believe that all children, no matter what age should have the right to play outside, all year round.
Things to consider when designing for babies
- The outdoor space and resources are easy to access, easy to use and well maintained.
- The space feels physically and emotionally secure, and comfortable to be in.
- The environment provides a good range of developmentally appropriate and valuable experiences for all
- The outdoor environment has plenty of flexibility for use and change, and is usable all year round
Activities to consider when designing outdoors for babies are; walking, eating, tummy time, sleeping, water play, reading, sensory experiences (touching grass, snow, dry leaves to crunch) Providing lots of opportunities for play with natural materials; sand/mud/ water with lots of opportunities to use their entire bodies to feel the texture. Physical development opportunities – walking, uneven surfacing, digging, exploring, rolling, stretching. Lots of opportunities for babies to pull themselves up to standing. Offer ease of access to the natural world – things such as gardening and mini beast exploration.
Spending time outside is an exciting, sensory experience for babies. It gives a baby the chance to look around and learn from every sight, noise and sound. Research shows that being outside gives them a more meaningful sensory experience than being indoors. Imagine the difference between lying on a blanket outside watching flickering leaves of a tree, feeling the sunshine and the breeze, hearing a dog bark nearby and smelling freshly cut grass. Contrast this to lying on a blanket in the house and looking up at a ceiling or mobile. The sensory experiences cannot be matched.
To find out more about designing outdoor environments for babies and our design and build service call Playgarden on 0114 2821285 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org