If you want your kids to be more active this summer, one of the best ways to go about this, is by creating a child friendly backyard! Get them to put down the video games and go outside for once and enjoy not only the yard, but time with you as well. If you want to do a great kids design for your yard, but you aren’t really sure where to start or you are looking for some fun ideas, continue reading below for some fantastic ideas. These yard designs are not only innovative and fun, but they also might include things that you can bring your kids in on such as helping to build certain things, paint, design a few things, etc. It’s a great way to get them involved more in the yard so it’s not just something you built for them without their input, it’s also something they helped with!
Chalkboard walls and panels are a newer thing in terms of exterior playtime, but it’s a really easy and cheap way to let your kids draw on something, and not have to pay for it to be painted over again! Some kids will take chalk and color your sidewalks or driveways. But, these chalkboard walls are cool because the part they write on is facing the inside of the yard, so only you and those inside the yard can see it, plus since it’s a chalkboard and chalk its really easy to clean up using an eraser or water. The chalkboard walls can be created using chalkboard paint – this can be found in any arts and crafts store or home improvement store. The paint goes on a solid surface, such as the inside of a flat surface fence, and when it dries, it turns into a giant chalkboard. Before you ask any home remodeling questions about this being used indoors, the answer is: YES! In fact, some parents paint one entire wall in a child’s room with this paint so that the kids can create their own designs using chalk. Pretty cool idea!
Beach Style Sandbox
I think every adult has played in a sandbox at least once when they were a kid. It’s a fun and interesting way to let your kids play. You wouldn’t think regular old sand would be much fun, but add in a few sand pails, some colorful sand molds and something like a small toddler swimming pool, and you have a fantastic area just for the littler kids in your family. You can also use spikes and some darker material to create a canopy over the sandbox so that even in the sandbox they can enjoy themselves without worrying about squinting from the sun and you don’t have to worry about them getting sunburnt. Make sure you use a canvas canopy that is deemed for outdoor use and one that has protective elements from UV rays so even the rays can’t get through.
You wouldn’t believe it, but climbing walls are really easy to make, and pretty cheap too. I would suggest using two walls rather than one, but if all you can fit is one, that’s okay too. One wall with hand holds, joist hangers, and the works, costs about $150. Add some paint in and you’re looking at maybe $180. That’s pretty darn cheap for hours of fun, don’t you think? You would need a frame using 4x4s, some plywood, drywall screws, etc. to create the actual wall. Then you can find a kit with the hand holds and all of the hardware needed in most any adventure store like Dicks for about $40-$50. The wall can be as tall as you want, but if you want your kids to be safe, it’s a good idea not to make it too tall, and if possible put some rubber mats on the ground below just as an extra safety measure.
Alternatives to Pools
Some people don’t have the time, money or the space for a swimming pool, while other parents just are worried about safety issues. The next best thing? Water Pads. These cool little things can be as big or small as you want, but essentially they are tiles and in the tiles there are water spouts where water comes out, almost like the squirting water spouts you see at some amusement parks. One of the best materials to use for the floor is going to be travertine tiles. These are perfect for safety reasons because they are non-slippery, but you could use any non-slippery surface. Add in a few design details, and create an extra deck surface on the perimeter of the splash pad, add in furniture and you have a really cool place for kids and adults to cool down during the summer months.