The world was a lot simpler BC – Before Children. Remember when you could leave things around the house without worrying little people would eat it or injure themselves or others with it. Once the kids come along suddenly everything becomes a consideration for their safety, and seen in a different light. Of course, we wouldn’t give them up for the world so we create spaces in our homes and lives where we can be sure they are safe. One of the most important areas has to be a safe, fun and spacious play area. Pergolas or other shaded areas are perfect. Being close to the house you can keep an eye on the kids and this also provides shelter from the elements.
Designate a Kids Area
One of the issues with regards to kids playing is a play area, if it isn’t given a specific defined area can quickly take over the whole house. While you may start off with a kids only area soon you find toys, bikes, lego pieces and discarded cups everywhere! It is important for the back garden to be a space the entire family can enjoy, which is why designating a kid’s area is essential. Make sure the kids understand that in their designated area they can play to their hearts content and leave things lying around, but any toys taken outside the area must be put back in their place as soon as they’ve finished.
Visibility and Safety
Another benefit of having a kid’s play area is you can control the environment. Make sure the area is visible from the house without too much effort, and easily accessible if you need to step in. It’s also a good idea to make sure pavers or grass are kept neat and maintained to prevent too many accidents. Perhaps try and have the area with a soft surface, as you won’t be able to convince the kids to slow down!
In our harsh New Zealand sun, it’s vitally important to make sure kids are protected from sunburn. As little as ten minutes in direct sunlight during a hot day can cause damage to delicate child skin, and with studies showing links between childhood sun burn and adult skin cancer, you can never be too careful. Creating a shaded space is one of the best ways to ensure that your children stay safe and cool.
Pergolas, louvres and shade sails are available from Auckland Pergolas Patios and Carports. Ph 09 281 4623 – www.appcltd.co.nz
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