Even though we all begin our journey through life as kids, you’ll find that most homes simply aren’t designed with children in mind. Photographs, paintings, and other objects of interest are hung from the walls at the eye level of an adult; stairs present more of a climbing challenge than a means of accessing the upper floors. When you have to make space for children in your home, you often have to work around or against these adult-oriented design considerations. Here are some of the elements you can use to give kids a great play area.
Bring nature into play
For some homeowners, letting children get a daily dose of nature is as simple as letting them run around in the yard. With the right garage door installation, floor upgrades, and wall finishing, you can create a seamless transition between the indoor and outdoor environments for kids to play in all day. But if you have limited space or live in an apartment, don’t worry as a well-placed window lets your child observe the outdoors and enjoy natural light. You can introduce child-friendly indoor plants and pets like goldfish to maintain the presence of nature in their daily playtime.
Free up that floor space
Floor space is perhaps the most valuable commodity in creating a play area for kids. It won’t matter how many toys or coloring books you give them if there’s hardly any room for them to move about. Do the children and yourself a favor, and clear out the clutter and make more space. If you’ve accumulated a lot of stuff over the years, this can be a daunting task, so break it down. Try to dedicate at least an hour each day to sorting through your belongings and deciding what to keep or discard; you can easily free up an entire room after a week.
Work out a storage system
Despite your efforts to clear out some room, when left to their own devices, kids will quickly create a mess in their designated play area; it’s what they do. Thus, it’s essential to include storage options in this space. This helps you teach them to practice organization and to pick up after themselves. It also gives the children control over which toys or activities they get to pull out of storage and play with for the day. Rotating toys also encourages kids to be more engaged and inventive at play while avoiding overstimulation and toy overload.
Allow for some rest
In the morning, a child may feel up for playing all day, but there will always be times when they need to take a midday nap or retreat to somewhere comfortable for a more leisurely activity, such as reading a book. Part of your play area should accommodate this need with a cozy setup. Arrange some pillows on the floor in the corner of the room or set up a snug child-sized chair by the window; this gives them the option to curl up and relax without leaving the playroom (and potentially making a mess elsewhere around the house).
As they grow up, kids will constantly be adapting to fit in a world designed for adults. By making these basic changes around your home, you can give them space where they can be comfortable being themselves for years to come.