A child’s toddler years (between ages 1 and 3) are a fun and challenging time for any parent. During this age, children are learning quickly about the world around them, increasing their physical growth and motor development exponentially. They also begin to act more independently, which leads to more defiant behavior as their own wants butt up against what their parents and caretakers would like them to do.
Finding things that toddlers love can promote independence without rebellion. Fostering independence can also help them grow developmentally, allow them to expend energy, and create lasting memories for families. Outdoor playsets are a great way to allow toddlers to learn and grow in their own time from home.
Young Toddlers and Coordination on Outdoor Playsets
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, early stage toddlers (between the ages of 1 and 2 years old) may seem to be moving continually between running, kicking, climbing, and jumping. These gross motor skills, those that involve the coordination of larger muscles in making large movements, are important for a child’s development and in strengthening their muscles. They often learn to walk early in the toddler stage, quickly learning to coordinate their movements.
Giving children a space to run, jump, climb, and kick without injuring themselves or others will help promote their muscle growth and the development of gross motor skills. On an outdoor playset specially customized for a toddler’s growing abilities, they can learn the coordination needed between when to kick out their legs on a swing from a basket seat that keeps them safely secured, climb up sturdy stairs and ladders or up a rockwall, and run around in a safe environment. (Always remember to supervise toddlers on or around outdoor playsets, even if they are in an enclosed space.)
Older Toddlers and Imagination on Outdoor Playsets
For children ages 2-3, they’re beginning to play make-believe and develop more robust gross motor skills, like kicking a ball or balancing. For toddlers in this age group, giving them more opportunities to explore and play pretend can help them strengthen these skills.
With an outdoor playset, toddlers can grow these skills by using the set to create the scene for whatever their imagination can come up with. They are likely to be more certain of their movements, climbing faster, swinging higher, and going down the slide with more confidence.
Toddlers and Safety
As toddlers begin to move around more freely and quickly, it’s important to create a safe environment for them to explore and play within.
- Always supervise toddlers and younger children who are playing on or around a playset or throughout the yard. Accidents happen suddenly.
- Make sure dangerous objects, such as broken toys or pieces of sharp material, are picked up.
- Create a soft ground where children can play, such as grass, mulch, or other materials that will decrease the likelihood of getting hurt if they fall.
- Create a playset that is built to their needs and skills. At Rainbow Play, we have a variety of customizable accessories available so that your playset can be built for your toddler but change and grow as your child does.
- Make sure the playset you choose is designed with safety in mind. We use top-quality Cedar that will last for years and has been treated to prevent splinters. Our slides are designed with walls high enough to keep children from tumbling over the side, and swings for a variety of sizes and ages are available.
- Ensure that their play space doesn’t get too much sun. If a shady area isn’t available, Rainbow Playsets’ canopies and wooden roofs keep children shaded. Our wooden and plastic structures are designed to keep cool, lessening the heat impact on children and preventing burns.
Best of all, a personal outdoor playset in your yard means your children can play whenever the mood strikes without packing up your toddler and head to the closest park. Help your child to grow their imagination and motor skills from your own safe and private backyard, even long after they have grown out of the toddler stage. Childhood is a precious and fleeting time; get the most out of it with a customizable Rainbow Play outdoor playset.