image by Justin Kearns
Coming into the warm summer months encourages kids to want to play outside and absorb the fresh air and sunlight. Naturally, parents are concerned about their kid’s safety, particularly whilst playing and running around in the backyard. The backyard tends to be one of the favorite areas for young children to play, especially when they have access to swings, sandpits, toys, slides and sports equipment. We’ve provided some ideas of how to create a friendly environment to help keep your kids out of harms-way, whilst they adventure off into the backyard experience.
Secure the garden
Kids are attracted to anything and everything. You never know what runs through your kids imagination and what they are drawn to. Firstly, try and avoid having a garden that features any plants that grow thorns, such as roses. It may even be worthwhile to prevent them from having access to the garden, by blocking off the edges with child proof fencing or a gate. This will also prevent them from eating or playing with any harmful berries, fruit, bugs or insects. We all know young kids like to put things in their mouth, so prevent that from happening by securing off the garden altogether.
Keep harmful objects out of reach
Now that the garden is secure, make sure any sharp or dangerous objects are securely stowed away, in areas inaccessible to the kids. This list of items includes anything that kids could evidently cut themselves on, such as gardening tools or even a lawn mower. Also store away anything that could be pulled or pushed over, which may include numerous items, such as sports equipment, shovels or tools that may be left lying around. Avoid leaving anything that can be climbed up or onto, such as barbeques, unstable chairs or furniture. Some of these hints may sound obvious or absurd, but kids truly do have the wildest imaginations.
Maintain the yard consistently
Prior to allowing the kids in the backyard, make sure the lawn is mowed or groomed on a consistent basis. This will allow you to observe for any unwanted items that can find its way into your backyard, often without you knowing. If the grass is too long, it’s hard to identify any sharp objects, such as glass, or any seeds, stones or leaves that have blown through the wind. General maintenance of the backyard will allow early detection of these unwanted items prior to allowing your kids access outside.
Provide toys and play areas
To keep your kids focus on harmless activities, provide them with toys and play areas to keep them entertained and amused. This can often prevent your children from going off the beaten track and exploring on their own. This could include their general indoor toys, balls or activities. However, most kids like to go outside, as it’s an experience they can’t endeavor indoors. Perhaps it would be beneficial to provide them with a sandpit or swing-set to play on. Of course, always make sure that they are fully supervised when having access to these facilities. By following these simple steps, your backyard will be a more secure and safe environment for your kids to experience and set off on thrilling adventures. In addition to these steps, be sure to use common sense by securing the backyard from the houses next door and front yard, locking up the shed and of course, be sun smart, by supplying sunscreen and appropriate clothing for your kids.
Michael C. is one of the leading new home builders on the Gold Coast, Australia. He says that creating a kid friendly backyard is simple if you follow his four tips and your children will have a safe and enjoyable place to play.