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Nursery Outdoor Equipment: The Benefits Of Fresh Air And Sunshine For Early Learning

Published on 12th July 2022 by Tessa Robinson

Early learning children (under the age of five) love to play outdoors, and with nothing more than open space, they will find a way to have fun. Durable, age-appropriate nursery outdoor equipment can enhance the playtime of early learners by providing visual stimulation, safe apparatus for climbing, imaginative and creative play inspiration, and more. 

With the right combination of time outside and nursery equipment, children can have hours of excitement and enjoyment, whilst also making some real developmental gains. 

Why Is Outdoor Time So Good For Early Learners?

Nursery Outdoor Equipment: The Benefits Of Fresh Air And Sunshine For Early LearningPlaytime outdoors, either at home or at school, is incredibly important for very young children. It provides them with a huge range of benefits including: 

Lots Of Physical Exercise

Children under the age of five need around three hours of exercise a day, so outdoor playtime is really important. It’s where they can have the space to run around, climb, jump and otherwise expend that energy and work their growing bones and muscles. 

Children who play outside are also able to develop fine and gross motor skills, practising agility, coordination, balance and spatial awareness. They are also challenging their own physical endurance, and working all areas of the body with various playground activities, consistently supporting their overall physical development minute by minute. 

Making A Connection With The World Around Them

Children can touch, feel, smell and see the world around them all the time, but in a natural outdoor play setting, they get to grips with nature itself. Touching a leaf, smelling some freshly picked herbs, feeling the rain on their skin – they experience the world in full and make a connection with it, an important foundation for any child to make so they can then build on that awareness through education and life experience. 

Emotional Wellbeing

Children who have too much screen time can be prone to lower levels of psychological well-being, self control, curiosity, emotional stability and are more likely to struggle to finish tasks and to be distracted. When they are outdoors things are quite the opposite. Children are immersed in their environment, better able to express themselves, test emotional and social boundaries, work through difficult emotions with imaginative play, and they consistently exercise, which releases feel good hormones that help with their overall mood. 

Children who spend time outdoors building dens, making gains on playground equipment and challenging themselves daily with games like hopscotch, or snakes and ladders, also grow self esteem and confidence as they push their own boundaries and make progress. 

Social Time

Around the age of two children start to engage with other children more, and although they still prefer to play with mummy and daddy the most, social skills are starting to be formed. 

By the age of four they are likely to have lots of friends and even form close bonds with other children. Time outdoors helps these social skills develop because children will naturally invent games alone and together. They create their own rules, and plans. They learn to share nursery playground equipment, and to get involved in games around that equipment. 

Playing outside also creates a chance for shared experience and discovery, helping to form and strengthen social bonds between peer groups. 

Imaginative & Creative Play

The outdoors is an exceptional way to stimulate creativity and imaginative play in children. With all that open space they can be whoever they want to be, and create a different world every playtime. With additional playground equipment like wooden trains, bridges, kitchens, climbing frames and dressing up corners, this exploration of their minds can be pushed even further, allowing them to freely role play and pretend as much as they like. 

Adding Nursery Equipment To Enhance Outdoor Play For Early Years Children

Adding Nursery Equipment To Enhance Outdoor Play For Early Years ChildrenBeing outdoors can only ever be great for children, but there are ways to enhance that time outside even further, and that is by adding high-quality nursery equipment to their play area. 

Age-appropriate nursery equipment is able to create a wonderland of excitement, fun and exploration in any playground, of any size. Aesthetically, it brings to life what can be a dull and dismal grey concrete or asphalt layout. Functionally, it gives children endless opportunities to make the most of their time outdoors. 

Various types of nursery equipment are available including: 

  • Creative, sensory and understanding (such as mud kitchens, water buckets, sand play sets and arts and crafts)
  • Gardening (such as planters and sunflower growth measuring visual aids) 
  • Imaginative and role play (such as bridges, activity panels, dressing up corners and trains)
  • Outdoor furniture (such as benches, shelters, story time seating and dividers) 
  • Physical development (such as playground towers, early years climbing frames and fitness equipment)

All of the above nursery equipment types are available to safely enhance the outdoor time of children under the age of five as either standalone items, or in a combined design. 

Why Not Add Nursery Play Equipment To Your Playground? 

By providing children with a safe area to play outside you are already enhancing their lives and opportunity for development and fun. However, if you are looking to create even more opportunity for physical and emotional development for your early learners, well-made nursery playground equipment should be your next step. 

Why not speak to an expert company for more information about what’s available, and what could work well for your early years educational outdoor space. With one or more new additions to the playground design, your children will enjoy the fresh air, sunshine, outdoor fun and endless developmental benefits each and every playtime, season after season. 

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