Staples got it right when they termed back to school as “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year!" After a long summer of nonstop demands for entertainment, excitement, and finicky cuisine options, parents heave a sigh of relief knowing that their kids are being cared for in a proper educational setting.
Between the shiny new pencil cases, stacks of fresh notebooks, and freshly sharpened Frozen-themed pencils, that back to school shopping is fun for everyone. But here’s one item you probably didn’t think to put on your list: a swing set. A wooden swing set is possibly one of the most valuable supplies you can give to your kids at the beginning of a new school year.
Here are 4 reasons why you want to arm your children with a backyard playset this September.
#1 Social Skills
A new school year always brings with it slight trepidation for school-aged kids. A new classroom, a new teacher, new subjects – it’s all pretty overwhelming. If your child is entering a new school or class it is even more intimidating. A jungle gym might be just the thing to help kids get over that initial awkwardness of the first few weeks of school. After all, it’s so much easier to make new friends if you can just say, “Want to come play on my cool swing set after school?”
Aside from the fact that you have a great toy that makes it easy to invite new friends over to play with, outdoor playsets teach children important social skills like taking turns, cooperative play, and incorporating others into imaginative play. Kids also learn how to compromise with others so everyone is happy, a tremendous skill for life. Playground equipment provides children the setting for expanding their social skills in a fun and healthy way.
Kids who are good at sports generally have an easier time integrating into a new school year or any new setting. Throwing a ball around together naturally breaks the ice for kids, paving the way for healthy and confident relationship building.
Playground sets help children develop their brains in ways that will actually help them do better in school as well. The swinging motion stimulates the cerebral cortex, the part of the brain that helps you focus. It also boosts sensory integration, a key tool that enables us to organize and interpret information better. In fact, since playing on a swing set requires kids to take multiple actions simultaneously, the very act of playing on the playground equipment helps develop the brain by promoting interconnections between the pathways in the brain. All this amounts to better learning skills for life.
Pretend play that often accompanies backyard playsets also helps children develop their brains in new and exciting ways.
#4 Down Time
Studies have shown that swing sets help to reduce the stress levels in children. While they’re not holding down nine-to-fives, kids have a tremendous amount of stress throughout their day, especially at the beginning of a school year. A wooden swing set gives your child an outlet for releasing all that stress in the soothing, easy, and enjoyable sway of outdoor swings. Especially if your child is known to get anxious or has trouble calming down, a play set is an invaluable tool that can help him or her immeasurably.
If you want to learn more about the tremendous benefits swing sets bring to your children, check outThe Ultimate Swing Set Guide for Parents, our free ebook for parents who want to know more about how to purchase, set up, and maintain their backyard playset.