Outdoor play structures are different than most toys because they are larger in size and often come equipped with more than one activity. If you are interested in purchasing or building one of these popular play structures, here are some tips to help you make those decisions.
When familiarizing yourself with popular outdoor play structures, you will find that you have a number of different options. Perhaps, the easiest way to go about seeing what is available is to visit your local retail stores. Many home improvement stores, toy stores, and department stores should have a fairly large selection of play structures available. In addition to seeing what is available locally, most storefront retail locations will have displays setup. These displays may give you an idea as to what your child’s new toy will look like in your backyard.
While it is nice to view the selection of local play structures, you may also want to examine a number of different online retailers. You may not get to see product displays, but you should be provided with detailed information, including pictures, and more importantly, customer reviews. And many online retailers such as Amazon.com have a larger product selection when compared to most traditional retail stores.
What do children want in their play spaces?
- Animals, insects, creatures in ponds
- Sand (especially when mixed with water)
- Natural colour, diversity and change
- Places and features to sit on; in; under; lean against; provide privacy; shade; shelter
- Different levels, nooks, crannies, places to hide
- Structures or objects that can be changed, including lots of loose parts
What is a Play Structure?
Whether you shop online or at one of your local retail stores, it is likely that you will come across a number of different items that are referred to as play structures. As previously mentioned, most play structures are large in size and are often equipped with more than one activity. Popular play structures include, but should not limited to, swing sets, playhouses, sandboxes, and tree forts.
Sandboxes are often referred to as outdoor play structures because they are made of durable materials. Popular sandbox styles include ones that are made with plastic or wood. It is also important to note that sandboxes come in a wide variety of different sizes. This means that if you have a large yard or a small yard, you should be able to find a sandbox that is perfect for your child.
Tree forts are another popular backyard play structure. Unlike many other play structures, tree forts may be hard to find for sale. This is because a large number of them aren’t just big, but enormous. If you are able to find tree forts for sale, it is likely that only the supplies are for sale. It is rare to find a fully assembled tree fort in most, on and offline, retail stores. If your child would like to have a tree fort, but you are unable to find the supplies for sale or make one yourself, you may want to seek the assistance of a professional contractor.
Tree forts are many children’s dream toy, however, not every yard can support one. If you are unable to afford the cost of a tree house or if you do not have large enough trees in your backyard, you may want to think about purchasing a playhouse. In a way, playhouses are similar to tree forts. The only difference is that playhouses are ground structures. Playhouses, like most other outdoor structures, come in a wide variety of different styles. Many of these styles are great for boys, girls, or even both.
Swing sets often come equipped with swings, slides, teeter totters, and monkey bars. Metal swing sets are available for a reasonable price. For a more expensive and dependable structure, wood swing sets are also available.
In addition to tree forts, playhouses, swing sets, and sandboxes, there are also a number of other outside play structures that are available for sale. Whether you purchase one of the ones mentioned above, another, or make your own, your child will be delighted with their new play and activity area!