Young children develop through play. When they’re out and about jumping, twirling, swinging, and tumbling, you know they’re developing more than just their physical bodies.
Physical aspects of growth aside, children need to move their bodies to stimulate their brains, building neural connections. The more these connections in the brain are used, the more the brain strengthens them.
In Finland, they have realized the importance of play or physical activity in the development of children. Because of this, they developed outdoor experiences to be incorporated into children’s daily routines.
There are plenty more benefits of playing outside on wooden playgrounds, so let’s take a look:
- Oxygen-Rich Fresh Air
Being outside has one distinct benefit: children receive more oxygen to fuel their bodies. The more oxygen the body gets from this activity, the better it functions and grows.
This is also one of the benefits of nature play in children that the Finnish have noticed. Giving children time outdoors helped them fare better in their academics. Oxygen is the life-giving element that we all need, and playing outside would ensure that children receive enough for their growth and development.
- Finetuning Small Muscles
Occupational and physical therapists would most likely agree that the development of fine motor skills is an important aspect of children’s physical development.
Without proper control of the smaller muscles in the hands and fingers, children would not be able to hold a pencil to write with or learn to button their own clothes. They can develop their fine motor skills by grabbing, grasping, turning, and pulling on objects on the playground. Using their fine muscles during play also builds their dexterity.
High-quality wooden playground equipment would ensure that these activities are safely performed while the brain connects the dots. And more neural connections in the brain translate to better academic performance for physically active children.
- Coordinating Big Muscles
Large muscle groups are responsible for posture, sitting upright, walking, running, jumping, and other movements.
The development of these large muscle groups enables children to perform everyday functions such as walking from class to class and sitting upright at their desks doing schoolwork. The core muscle group is at the center of this, and the more these muscles are used and developed, the stronger they become.
Activities like hanging, crawling, and stretching activate the big muscle groups. Wooden playground equipment is excellent for this purpose as it facilitates outdoor learning, which benefits the children greatly.
- Development Of Senses
Sensory development is another main area of development that is essential for every child. Learning to use their senses help them function more optimally in a classroom setup and other settings as well.
Looking around the playground helps the eye muscles focus on near and far objects, just like they would while writing in a book while copying from the blackboard. Noisy classrooms are often distracting to children, and learning to drown out the background noises would be helpful to get their academic work done.
On the playground, children can focus on touching the next rung of the ladder, while in the classroom, this translates to holding onto their pencil to complete their work.
- Balance Is Key
Balance is needed not only to keep us upright when walking but also for running, lifting, bending, and other activities.
Our balance is coordinated by the middle ear and the body’s muscles. If neither is developed, it could have catastrophic effects on a child’s development.
When children are hanging upside down, sliding, climbing, rolling, and jumping on playground equipment, they’re improving their balance. And with better balance, children improve their agility and reduce their risk of injury.
- Learning Social Skills
Companies often hire employees based on their soft skills. These skills could include problem-solving, teamwork, respect, and many others.
Children who learn these skills at a young age take them to adulthood if consistently practised. Good manners are taught at home but reinforced while interacting with other children on the playground.
Using communication skills to handle conflicts that may inevitably arise, taking turns on the swing, and respectfully waiting their turn are some of the skills developments that happen while playing. Leadership skills could also be identified in children helping to organize younger children.
Letting children play outside has more benefits than giving adults a few more minutes of peace. They’re developing crucial skills they need to apply throughout their lives. Wooden playground equipment gives them the perfect opportunities for physical, cognitive, sensory, and social development, thereby preparing them for future success.