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National Children’s Gardening Week 2019

News19 Ncgw19 Featured | National Children’s Gardening Week 2019 | Creative Play

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“Together we can help children grow”

Often a child’s favourite place to be is in the back garden, whether this is kicking a ball around playing football or paddling around in the swimming pool – the activities available are endless!

In addition to the fun playing, children love to grow plants and with the warmer months approaching – National Children’s Gardening Week arrives!

National Children’s Gardening Week encourages children to take part in gardening including in school and aims to provide activities and resources for families and schools around children’s gardening.

The earth has been impacted hugely with our actions such as pollution, waste, and recycling and is damaging the environment on a daily basis, so we need to try and reverse this and look after it.

According to the National Trust, children aren’t playing outside as much as previous generations, spending 17 hours each week watching television and 20 hours online – however, children being stuck inside can disconnect children from the natural world.

The benefits provided from children gardening include improvements in physical health, mental well-being, social skills and behaviour – further information can be found on their website

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In light of National Children’s Gardening Week, we have launched two BRAND NEW Viewing Planters!

These products allow children to plant their own seeds and watch their plants transform, observing how the root systems grow and even see the small insects and creepy crawlies bust at work! Click here to check out our new Viewing Planters

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Outdoor Classroom Day 2019

News19 Ocd19 Featured | Outdoor Classroom Day 2019 | Creative Play

Learning outdoors offers more benefits than the obvious! Teachers report some great benefits such as improvement to children’s behaviours and the class become excited to learn and interact more!

When adults think back to their happiest moments, 9 times out of 10, playing outdoors is a fond memory.

Outdoor classroom day is a campaign aimed to encourage children to play and learn outdoors – it may be a case of encouraging teachers to take learning outdoor for the first time or if this is something that is already being regularly done, take a day to celebrate the opportunity they have by being able to provide this resource – even inspire other neighbouring schools to get involved!

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In 2018 over 3.5 million children took part in outdoor classroom day world-wide with more than 550,000 of those were in the UK & Ireland.

Outside of school, less and less children are spending time outdoors and games consoles and TV seem to be taking over – there are many reasons for this but playing outdoors plays a vital part to a child’s development.

Learning and playing outdoors encourages the development of self-awareness, confidence and self-esteem, develops social and communicative skills and provides positive health benefits – both physically and mentally. It also supports and assists fundamental movement skills and many many more…

In addition to this playing and learning outside also helps children to understand and respect nature, the environment and the interdependence of humans, animals, plants, and lifecycle.


We fully support Outdoor Classroom Day as we understand the benefits outdoor learning brings – in light of this, we currently have a selection of savings on our shelters – you can view these here


If you would like to get involved please visit https://outdoorclassroomday.org.uk/ – they have information on how to get involved and all the resources required!

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Staying Safe in the SUN!

News19 Safesun Featured | Staying Safe In The Sun! | Creative Play

The sun is great isn’t it? The warmth, the summer colours, the ability to enjoy the outdoors without layers of clothes and a rain coat on?

Let’s face it, when the sun is out when we wake up, we have a smile on our face! With the sun however, comes the dangers…. Sun burning!

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It is no secret that unprotected exposure to the sun is dangerous to everyone, especially children!

Children’s skin is a lot more sensitive that adults (around 30% thinner) and exposure to the sun could lead to skin cancer developing later on in life.

Did you know that one bad burn in childhood doubles the risk factor for melanoma later in life?

Can we reduce the risks? ABSOLUTELY!

There are so many things we can do to reduce the risks of burning and ultimately reducing the risks of skin cancer later in life.


SUN CREAM

Sun cream plays a huge part – did you know most people do not apply enough sunscreen and you should only use SPF15 and above to ensure sufficient protection.

The sun is at its strongest between 11am and 3pm therefore using sun cream throughout the day is important to allow coverage throughout – even if the sun is not shining and it is cloudy or overcast, you should still protect your own and children’s skin as did you know… up to 80% of UV rays can pass through clouds! – Surprising isn’t it…

SHADE

During the strongest times of the sun, it is advised to stay in shaded areas if possible, for example under trees, shelters or parasols – this is in addition to applying sun cream and some the advice below.

If you are a school or public facility, please take a look at our shelters and shaded options to ensure you are providing shaded areas for both children and adults – this is especially becoming increasingly popular within schools.

CLOTHING

There are certain things suggested to wear during exposure to the sun, for children this includes:

  • Baggy cotton clothing – ideally with long sleeves
  • Sun hats with wide brims that shades children face, neck and ears
  • Sunglasses – ensure they are glasses that meet the British Standards and carry the ‘CE’ mark – check the label
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The points covered here are the basics and there is so much more you can do, did you know that according to Cancer Research UK 86% of Melanoma Skin Cancer cases are preventable in the UK?

Let’s make a start today to reducing the risks of sun burn and further problems later in life and give the best protection to children as we can.


ATTENTION SCHOOLS!

We fully support the protection of children during school hours and we have been working with Skcin charity who work with schools to ensure they meet a criteria to become accredited ‘SunSafe’ giving parents piece of mind you offer the best for pupils attending!


Reference Library

https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/healthy-body/sunscreen-and-sun-safety/

https://www.greenpeople.co.uk/beauty-hub/blog/10-facts-keep-sun-safe

https://www.actionforchildren.org.uk/news-and-blogs/parenting-tips/2016/august/8-ways-to-keep-kids-safe-in-the-sun/

https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/health-professional/cancer-statistics/statistics-by-cancer-type/melanoma-skin-cancer

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Work (Out) Hard & Play Hard – Our Micheldever Parish Council Development

News19 Micheldever Featured | Work (Out) Hard &Amp; Play Hard - Our Micheldever Parish Council Development | Creative Play

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A couple of weeks ago, we were fortunate to attend the grand opening for our latest local authority development – Micheldever Parish Council.

All about removing existing tired equipment and creating a brand new a playground suitable for both younger and older children, Micheldever also wanted to create an impressive outdoor gym facility that could be be used by adults of the community.


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Once we had removed the existing equipment, we decided to utilise the current fenced area and use it as a designated play area for younger children. Items such as our Jungle Climber Micro, Double Cradle Seat Swings, low-level Jigsaw play tower and Motorbike Spring Rider were selected to provide a wide range of play opportunities, such as sliding, climbing and traversing, whilst various benches allow parents to take a seat during supervision.

Outside the fenced play area, we decided to add another Jigsaw play tower, this time with a lot more challenging play features suitable for older children, as well as our popular Basket Swing and Double Flat Seat Swing. This allows older children of Micheldever to still be challenged whilst allowing younger children to ingrate, if they wish, in the swing area.

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Adjacent to the newly created two-zone playground, we decided to create a bespoke outdoor gym facility for the adult residents of Micheldever. Together with input from  the council, as well as local residents, a variety of both timber and metal equipment fitness stations were to chosen to meet there specific fitness needs. Stations such as our Double Cross Country Skier allow two people to exercise together, whilst our Inclusive Arm & Pedal Bike provide individuals with various disabilities to still access and enjoy the new facility. Various items from our new timber Work Out range were also included to allow individuals to perform more classic ‘gym’ exercises such as pull ups and leg raises.

Finally as all equipment (both play and fitness) was installed onto existing grass throughout the development, we laid our grass mat surfacing where appropriate to ensure all BSEN 1176/1177 safety standards were met as well as to preserve high wear areas – allowing all Micheldever residents to enjoy their new outdoor area for many years to come!

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Is your local authority or parish council thinking of developing its outdoor space?

Get in touch with Creative Play today to book in your no-obligation consultation and quotation – click here