10 Cool and Fun Outdoor Play Ideas for Kids

What child doesn’t love a playhouse? If you’re thinking about setting up an outdoor playhouse for your kids, Tiny Tiny Shop Shop has some great ideas.

What child doesn’t love a playhouse? If you’re thinking about setting up an outdoor playhouse for your kids, they’ll surely be delighted.  Children are naturally inclined to love playing outside, but you’ll still want to think about ways to entice your kids to make as much use of their outdoor toys and equipment as possible, as well as ways to make the space entertaining and stimulating for them – and maybe even for you! Here are some suggestions for creating and utilizing the ultimate back (or front) yard play space:

Incorporate outdoor furniture

You enjoy relaxing with a good book on a comfortable patio chair in the sun. Why not give your kids the same opportunity with patio furniture that’s just their size? Or maybe they’d like to plan make-believe picnics in “their” backyard, preparing their favorite treats in their playhouse kitchen and sharing them al fresco with their friends. A kid-size picnic table is a great complement for a kids’ playhouse. It can also be used as a place for kids to eat and socialize during family barbecues, or for mess-free snacks during long summer afternoons of outdoor play.

Choose Toys That Encourage Imagination

One of the main things children do when they play, indoors or out, is use their imagination. Kids are naturals when it comes to pretending, but providing them with the right toys can really push their imaginative play over the top. Consider enhancing your outdoor toy collection with items like a pedal car. Built to look just like the real thing, this toy provides a great form of exercise as well as hours of engaging pretend play. Kids can use their car to go on imaginary trips to the store, or to the other side of the world and back! Either way, they’ll love the experience of “driving” exactly where they want to go.

Select Accessories That Enhance Play

Children don’t need a lot of “extras” for outdoor play, but a few additions can really add to create an entertaining playhouse kids will love. A toy gas pump turns a playhouse into a town with its own small business, while a racecar driver’s garb turns a ride on car into a dragster and a sidewalk into a speedway.

Provide a Space for Outdoor Projects

Kids can do all kinds of things outside that they can’t do inside: run, shout, jump, climb, and explore, to name a few. The backyard is also the ideal place for projects you would rather not bring inside the house – or that would be impossible to execute indoors. For example, your children might design and execute their own mini-construction projects, building birdhouses or spaceships or whatever else they can imagine. Another option that all children will find exciting is to design and grow their own garden. A playhouse for kids with an adjacent garden is the perfect place for catching butterflies or chasing fairies.

Select Items Kids Can Arrange

Kids can imagine an endless variety of play scenarios, and if they can move their furniture and other playthings on their own, their play space will always feel new and exciting.Although some larger pieces will need to stay put once they’re in place, you should think about providing some pieces of play equipment or furniture that kids can move around on their own. This will give them a sense of ownership over their play space.

Encourage “Gross Motor” Play

Kids can move differently outside than they do when they’re inside. When kids have the opportunity to run, climb, stretch, swing, twirl, etc. they are not only exercising their bodies; they are also learning how to orient their bodies to other objects in their environment. Children benefit from play that gets them moving their big muscles in numerous ways, so look for ways to encourage various types of movement. A pedal car is a great way to incorporate gross motor skills into kids’ make believe play; other options are swings, slides, and climbing equipment.

Bring Indoor Toys Out

Children play differently with their toys when they’re in different environments.Bring an indoor playhouse outside in the grass when the weather is nice, and kids can imagine themselves or their dolls as wilderness explorers or island castaways. A simple change of scenery can give children a completely different perspective on their playthings and give familiar toys a whole new appeal.

Provide Toys That Model “Real Life”

Play is one of the major ways kids learn about the adult world. A playhouse is an almost magical opportunity for children to imagine themselves carrying out adult tasks and solving everyday problems. If your child likes to play with dolls, a KidKraft dollhouse is the perfect place for them to set up housekeeping or take their dolls for a holiday. A doll-sized suitcase and some traveling clothes can inspire children to imagine taking their dolls on trips to faraway places, and a playhouse stocked with a high chair and crib will allow them to play at taking care of all of their babies’ needs.

Involve Kids in the Planning Process

Once you’ve decided on a general plan and budget for your outdoor play project, get your kids involved! It’s their play space, so they should have a say in what’s going there. Set realistic limits on what they can choose and allow them to make decisions about which toys they want most. Encourage them to imagine how they would play with the items they select, and be mindful of the fact that some toys grow with kids better than others. A piece of play equipment that’s going to be too small or may lose its appeal within a year or two may not be the best choice. A quality playhouse for kids will last a long time, so be sure to choose one your kids will still want to play with a couple years from now.

Hold a Housewarming Party!

Once you’ve set up your play yard, plan a party to celebrate! Whether you’re just making mud pies with your own children or inviting all the neighborhood kids to join you, a child-sized housewarming party or “ribbon cutting” is the perfect way to fuel your kids’ excitement about their new accommodations.

A playhouse for kids is an ideal way to ensure hours and hours of fun outdoor play. Make it exciting, interactive, and age-appropriate, and your children will enjoy their backyard play space for years to come.