Creating an enjoyable outdoor space for everyone

Creating an outdoor space for everyone within a schoolInclusivity is a key consideration for teachers in the classroom, but what about when children go outside?

Here are our tips to ensure all ages, abilities and interests are accommodated for in your outdoor area so you can help everyone enjoy themselves and have valuable learning experiences.

Top Tips for Inclusivity in the Playground:
1. Install ramps to accommodate those who use a wheelchair and have certain activities such as play panels at a height where younger children and those in wheelchairs can see and interact with them.

2. Allocate one area as a quiet space for those who prefer a less chaotic environment, this would also be beneficial for children with hearing impairments

3. In seating areas allow children to be able to sit face to face, this will allow lip reading, and sign language to take place with ease. It will also allow all children to develop their experience with and interpretation of gestures and facial expression. Having benches or picnic tables which allow face to face seating are a great way to do this

4. Introduce elements of texture and light and shade to make the area stimulating to children who experience cognitive or sensory impairment.

5. Ensure you have some surfaces that are firmer to allow those in wheelchairs to move around easily.

6. Ensure you have a shaded area so children can sit and cool down on hot days and shelter from heavy downpours when needed.

Creating an outdoor space that is suitable for everyone within a school environment7. A sensory garden is a great addition to any playground, make sure all flower beds are within reach for all children so they can touch and smell all the plants. This also helps introduce a more natural environment in contrast to any manmade/plastic outdoor play kits you have which some children may find challenging.

8. Add outdoor musical instruments to your outdoor area for children who experience sensory impairment. Items such as large chime bells can be enjoyed by children with hearing impairments as they can feel the vibrations of the bells.

Funding
An outdoor area is a valuable and often underused part of a school, yet it can have many positive effects on children. A permanent outdoor canopy allows children and staff to take advantage of the outdoor benefits all year round. These can be very cost effective and often these projects are eligible for funding as they benefit child development.

For more information on Funding Available to Schools, Nurseries, and Communities download our Funding Guide:

Download Our Free Funding Guide Now

Able Canopies Ltd. design, manufacture and install canopies and shade structures
at schools, nurseries and educational settings to enable year-round
Free Flow Outdoor Play and Outdoor Learning.
For more information please contact us

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Rachel is Able Canopies' previous Marketing Coordinator, she is an advocate of outdoor learning and the benefits the outdoor brings to all.

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