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Creating a Themed Playground Design

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09 Sep 2020

What is a themed playground?

One of the best things about children is their imagination and sense of wonder. In these early stages of life, children are naturally imaginative and this is something that if encouraged, can help them grow into happy, confident, inspired, and engaged adults.

In the same way that exercising a child’s cognitive thinking or fine motor skills plays a crucial role in furthering their development; so, does foster creativity through themed playground designs.

Themed playgrounds are an effective, unique, and exciting way of engaging children. A well-themed playground should create a play space that is cohesive and capable of transporting children to another world. Some examples of popular themes include; boat or ocean themes (obviously suitable for costal locations or sites near water), musical themes, animal themes (dinosaurs themed playgrounds could be used as a way of teaching children while they play), castle themes, and so on.

What Sets A Themed Playground Apart?

A themed playground is unique in both its design and the experience it provides for children. A well-designed themed play space should spark creativity in children encouraging them to play in new ways.

Themes bring a new element to a play space that allows children to explore new ways of thinking, playing, and interacting.

What Are the Benefits of Themed Play?

Site Specifics
Themed playgrounds can turn any dreary old location into something full of wonderment and awe. They are a great way to add value to your community, school, a new estate, or a park.

Areas with historical significance can also use themed playgrounds to express and evoke the history of their surroundings. For example, an old port or harbour can use ship-themed playground equipment to educate children on their surroundings as well as encourage them to imagine what the area may have been like in the past.

Play Value
Themed playgrounds encourage children to think outside of the box while playing and explore more of their unique interests. In turn, this helps foster a stronger sense of self-confidence in children. Part of holistic early childhood development is helping children discover who they are, what they like, and where they see themselves in the world around them. Themed play allows children to play in a variety of scenarios and roles that help them through their development.

More often than not a well-designed themed playground will be more engaging and exciting to children than a standard playground. With themes, children will also be able to play for longer and in more ways as their surroundings prompt different challenges, games, and scenarios. The more overall time spent on a playground the more benefits children can receive from the equipment. Themed playgrounds are incredibly engaging to children, they can spend hours and hours creatively exploring themes providing them with more of the physical and mental benefits of play.

How to Avoid Poor Themed Play Design

In any playground, it is important to strike the perfect balance between form and function. Aesthetics are an important part of a good playground however; they need to be backed by a functional playground design that provides children the benefits of true play value.

A big part of communicating a theme is the way your playground looks. Your theme should be cohesive throughout your equipment choices, design, and layout, in order to create a successful aesthetic and playground.

Ensure your chosen theme is going to be age/site appropriate to your user group. There is no point in developing a themed playground around things children won’t be interested in or understand.

Examples of Themed Playground Design:

Mernda Primary School – Boat Theme
This pirate-themed playground was a design challenge we took on in order to deliver the client a unique and valuable outcome. This design ignites children’s imaginations as they play on their big pirate ship letting their creativity run wild.

Creating a Themed Playground Design
Creating a Themed Playground Design

We custom built this pirate ship for the client to create an exciting adventure on their playground. This pirate-themed playground helps children develop their cognitive skills, social skills, and imagination, all while keeping them active with hours of play.

Mernda Primary School – Rocket Theme
Encouraging children to explore and gain confidence through play helps further their development and this playground does just that.

Creating a Themed Playground Design
Creating a Themed Playground Design

This unique playground design encourages children to find new ways to play. Not only is it great for their imagination and creativity but it also helps them take on physically challenged in order to climb all the way to the top. Themed play spaces like this help children grow strong both physically and mentally.

Elgar Park – Train Theme
This design incorporates multiple elements and equipment to create a train theme. This playground needed to cater to a range of ages, so it was important to keep it accessible and interesting to a broad age range.

The result is an unmistakable and effective aesthetic and a playground that is fun and challenging.

Creating a Themed Playground Design
Creating a Themed Playground Design

Cornerstone Estate – Safari Theme
This large custom timber build offers an exciting and unique safari adventure for children. Located near the Werribee open range zoo this theme excites children about the zoo and allows them to imagine their own wild adventures as they play.

Creating a Themed Playground Design
Creating a Themed Playground Design

Armstrong Creek – Beach house Theme
This beach box theme allows children to explore Victoria’s iconic bathing boxes. Located near the beach this theme provides children new and exciting ways to play while also teaching them about the history of the area around then

Creating a Themed Playground Design
Creating a Themed Playground Design

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