Make your backyard the ultimate place to be
As a primary and early childhood teacher myself and now also adding ‘new mum’ to the mix, I understand wholeheartedly that making a decision on larger play purchases for our children can be somewhat of a challenge. You want to be sure your hard earned dollars have gone towards a product that is going to be high quality and built to last, whilst also providing long term play and excitement for your children, rather than becoming a short lived whim.
With this in mind, it was important to Sam and I that all of our YARDart Cubbies were designed and built using high quality, durable materials that will stand the test of time, real hands on play and all weather, whilst offering endless opportunities for open-ended and child-directed play themes, sparked from their own imagination.
Whilst the kids begin to explore and create their own cubby play possibilities however, each week here in our Journal I will be providing you with free and inexpensive activity ideas and inspiration to mix up your cubby play. These weekly invitations to play are designed to help fire up your children’s own imagination and ensure your YARDart Cubby continues to be the ultimate place to be all year round!
The Real Deal
We mustn’t forget play is serious business for kids. They are role playing out and exploring their understanding of their experiences and world around them and where possible most children will prefer playing with real-life objects. If you already have some beautiful role play toys and mini-household items then great, but alternatively you can simply encourage your children to use what they can find lying around your house, backyard and neighbourhood (censored by you of course!).
Often, the more open-ended the play props the better, as they spark your children’s own creativity and imagination. In early years education these items are commonly referred to as ‘loose parts’ and some perfect examples you could gather for endless cubby play could be: sticks, rocks, pine cones, wooden off-cuts, old kitchen pots, pans and wooden spoons, cake and muffin tins (for mud pies of course!),string, pegs and some old rags for washing lines, blankets and cushions. Then stand back and observe what their creative minds conjure up!
All weather play
As a family, we are firm believers in the Scandinavian moto, ‘There is no such thing as bad weather’. All of our cubbies have been designed so that they can be easily moved (by adults) to any flat space in your yard depending on what mother nature brings. In the cooler months this may mean placing your cubby in a nice sunspot, whilst during our long hot summer placed under your favourite shady tree. Don’t forget, our cubbies are constructed for outdoor use and can be open for play in wet, muddy puddle weather too – just don’t forget to clean out the muddy paw prints soon after to ensure the longevity of your cubby!
Share the Love
The fact is our children don’t stay little forever and will eventually outgrow their beloved cubby. We all want to do our bit for the environment and the sustainability of our products is important for us at YARDart. With the right love and recommended care, your YARDart Cubby should last well beyond your children’s younger years and due to their easy manoeuvrability can be passed on to friends and family for years to come.
Alternatively, Sam can adapt your cubby to become the family chicken coop or future home for Ralph the dog – just give us a call!
We hope we have given you some inspiration to get the kids started and your family has as much fun with your new YARDart Cubby as we have had creating it!
Stay tuned for Week 2 of our ‘Backyard Cubby Play Everyday’ blog right here for many more activities ideas and inspiration!
In the meantime, we will be at The Village Markets at Burleigh State School this Sunday 20th Sept. Come along for a play and say hey!
Anya Imhoff (Nee Perkins) – Teacher, mother, ‘Mrs YARDart’ and Education Coordinator at Nature Play QLD