That year, we held off on the swing set and put in a fence to keep our little one away from the street and secure in our yard. Throughout the summer, I took notice at what our little one enjoyed doing - digging, planting, gardening, watering our vegetable plants, jumping on our stepping stones, playing in puddles, climbing and hiding in our overgrown Pee Gee Hydrangea bushes, playing on the little hill in our yard, investigating all the insects, gathering sticks, and organizing our stone border.
Clearly, we did not need a swing set.
I started searching the internet for natural play and discovered Natural Playgrounds. The company designs natural playscapes and natural play environments.
My husband and I would like to incorporate a few natural features in our yard that will enrich our little ones play area. Here our a few ideas I found on their website:
trees, shrubs, shade trees, tree canopy, fruit trees, flowers, raised bed gardens, vegetable garden, a misting trellis, moss garden, wild flower gardens, butterfly gardens
flowing stream, pond, waterfall, water fountains, flowing water, mud banks, water hole, water play area, rain garden
Mud, sand play area, dirt digging area
sitting area, sitting wall, sitting boulders, sitting rocks, tree benches, rock benches, wooden benches, stone walls covered with moss
forts, a tree house
wildlife, ducks, insects
stone fences, willow fences, wood fences
textures walkways, wood trails, winding paths, dry creek, bridge, tunnel
sledding hill, embankment slide, rock climbing area, fitness path, post climb, rope climb, tree climbs, arbor swings, balance beam, natural rock piles for climbing
old-fashioned porch swing, arbor, willow tunnels entrance, arbor entrance, amphitheater, stage, zen garden, fairy village, a labyrinth, sun catcher, collection tables, sensory boxes, art wall
It is wonderful to create an area for your little one to explore with their senses.