Children are spending less time playing outdoors than ever before. This is a concern as visiting their local playground is an important part of childhood development, allowing kids to expand their physical, social, emotional, and imaginative skills. While navigating the playground or running around with friends, children gain self-confidence, improve coordination, and develop critical thinking skills.
Below, you’ll find three different ways spending time at the playground can build confidence in children.
Both children and adults benefit from daily exercise, and playing is a great workout! While children play, run, jump, and stretch, they also develop their muscles and gross motor skills. Playground equipment, like the kind we build here at Dynamo Playgrounds, helps children to develop their agility, speed, strength, balance, and coordination.
As your child is able to jump higher, run faster, and climb farther — they will become more confident in their athletic abilities along with their ability to learn new things and take on new challenges. They could even become more willing to try something that previously scared them, like joining a sports team and making new friends.
Children love to make their parents and loved ones proud. Learning to fail and try again is a tough skill and the playground offers kids a safe and fun way to practice perseverance.
As a child plays and experiments with the tools and equipment available on the playground, they will teach themselves new skills instead of being taught or told what to do. The pride they feel after accomplishing something new, especially without assistance, certainly helps shape their self-confidence.
The more a child is familiar with an environment, the more they take risks and try new things. Playground equipment becomes increasingly familiar to kids the more they frequent the playground. And, the equipment stays consistent even when the weather and other things in life don’t.
Consistency at the playground also helps children to feel comfortable and explore independently. While some children may need their parents to hold their hands or guide them through the playground the first few times, eventually, they will learn the layout and won’t need guidance anymore. This allows parents to sit back, knowing that their child is in a safe environment and kids can have autonomy over how and where they play in the playground once they’ve adapted to the environment.
There are not many chances for a child to exert control over what they do throughout the day, but the playground is where children hone their independence and decision-making skills. For example, kids are free to choose if they’d like to go down the slide, up the slide, or perhaps pretend the slide is a snake! The endless opportunities for play in a safe, familiar environment lead to happier, more independent children.