fbpx UA-117135809-1

Do you have the heart to serve and care for children? If you do, opening a child care facility may be your dream. Considering childcare is one of the fastest growing industries in the U.S., it’s a great career to choose.

Putting together the ideal child care facility can be a fun and exciting process. From the paint colors to the overall theme of the school, you have a lot of decisions to make.

If you’re building a child care center, you cannot neglect the construction of a playground. Playground design is important. Check out five things every playground needs.

1. Eating and Rest Areas

Areas designated for eating and resting are a must for any playground. This gives kids a place to rest and have a snack. It also gives parents and child care instructors a place to sit and watch the children play.  Child size picnic tables are a classic choice, but various lawn chairs work as well.  Just make sure that they are heavy enough to not get blown around in the wind, or you’ll have to bring them indoors at the end of each day.

There may be days when you decide to let the kids have lunch or snack time outside. You’ll want to have tables and chairs or picnic tables for them to sit at. Benches are also a great idea to have throughout the playground.

2. Shade

When you are putting together playground design ideas, you want to be sure that you are including shaded areas.

Depending on where you are located, you may have a lot of hot, sunny days. An area that little ones can play under and still be protected from the sun is a necessity so they don’t get sunburns or overheated.

If you are in need of extra shade, purchase an outdoor shade structure like this Caravan Canopy.  It has legs that are straight up and down, which means you can connect more than one together to shade a larger area.  If you need your shade’s canopy to be taller than the average size, get some rain barrels, fill them with water, and then attach the canopy posts to the rain barrels.  This system is less expensive than buying a commercial shade structure, its moveable, and it works great!

3. Accessibility for All

The playground needs to be accessible for all children. This includes children with different handicaps that would still want to enjoy the facility. You should consider making the playground inclusive so there are activities for all children.

You also want to ensure safety when building the playground. Take note of any possible hazards and see what you can do to avoid them.

4. Amenities

What amenities will your child care playground include? Trash cans and recycling bins are just two things you should consider including. A few other things you may want to add:

  • Fountain
  • Arbor
  • Shelter areas

These amenities will benefit parents and children while improving the overall aesthetics of the playground.

5. Play Areas

What’s a playground without play areas? Ladders, climbing walls, swings, and slides are all great must-haves for any playground. Of course, when you are deciding what equipment to include, you need to take into account the age of the children that will be using it.

Will you include an area for water play? What about a sensory play area or a balance beam? The sky is the limit when you are planning fun and exciting play areas for a playground.

Another thing to consider for your playground is including synthetic turf. This will provide cushioning in areas that children are likely to fall.

Putting Together a Great Playground Design

When you are designing a child care center, you want to be sure that you remember the importance of the playground design. You want to be sure that you are creating an environment inside and out that’s conducive for little ones.

If you are ready to start on the development of your child care center or want more playground design ideas, be sure to contact us. Let us help you design your ideal center.

-This article was written by Rebecca Calbert. 

Rebecca is a licensed architect with over 30 years of experience.  She owns and operates an architectural firm, Calbert Design Group,  and educates her clients through the commercial real estate development process with online content at SaveOnBuilding.com.  Rebecca’s “purpose” is to educate small business owners and protect them from what they don’t know.

In the know...
Join our monthly Newsletter to receive the first chapter of our newly published book, "Building Your Daycare: Design and Construction Secrets You Wish You Knew".