February and March now seem to be the time of year when cold weather really sets in over the UK. So this is when the children are often less likely to venture outside and play in the fresh air. However, children don’t have to kept indoors during this time.
Instead, play in the colder months is very beneficial. Children who regularly play outside, even in the colder months have higher levels of vitamin D. When 20% of the UK population are deficient in this important vitamin, ensuring enough time outside is important to reduce the chances.
Another key benefit is for the mental health of children. Those who are outside show decreased levels of hyperactivity and depression. Children are also less likely to be obese if given more opportunities to play outside.
Outdoor play is also seen as a better way to encourage creative play and promote problem solving.
Keeping Play Outside Safe In Cold Weather
The cold weather often causes some outside areas to become more risky. Though with the proper precautions, these risks can be managed. For instance, installation of canopies can protect areas underneath them from freezing. They also offer shelter during downpours allowing children to play outside while still being protected.
School canopies also offer protection to equipment and toys that are left outside.
These are some of the benefits that educational settings have found when we’ve installed canopies at their locations. Edith Borthwick School had eight canopies installed that extended the covered play area at the school, sheltering students from cold, rain, snow and wind. This allows children to enjoy the great outdoors in comfort.
Mead Primary school also found that a good canopy allowed for lessons to be held outside in comfort. They had a massive 112m canopy installed. It allowed for a great covered outdoor area that protects children throughout the year whatever the weather may be. In addition, this canopy also protects children on the inside of classrooms from the glare of the sun which can be intense both in the summer and winter.
Do you allow your children to play outside during the winter months? How do you minimise risks and encourage outdoor play?
Let us know in the comments below.
Able Canopies Ltd. design, manufacture and install commercial grade canopies, shade sails,
awnings and shelters across the UK. We specialise in servicing the education, leisure,
healthcare and retail sectors and have extensive experience working with
schools, councils, architects and contracting firms.For more information on our products and services please contact us