There is no Such Thing as Bad Weather When You Have a Playhouse
Having an outdoor playhouse in the backyard is every kid's dream. However, many parents may think it is irrational to invest in a toy that will remain relevant only in summer, and while seasons change, kids may lose their interest in it.
Indeed, the image of kids spending time in an outdoor playhouse seems to look most natural on a warm sunny day. It is the time when your kids may have water gun fights, bubble parties turn their wooden playhouses into ice-cream shops or greenhouses for flowers and herbs.
However, pediatrists and psychologists say that kids of all ages miss out on some crucial things, experiences and benefits when they don't play outside all year round, especially in bad weather.
Except for being essential for their immune system, playing outside is a great way for kids to explore the world, learn about the environment, challenge themselves and enjoy the experiences that are so rare for modern people, especially those who live in urban areas.
Getting wet and dirty, jumping in mud, and dancing in the rain – ll those outdoor activities are not just a great adventure, but a way their bodies learn to adjust to different temperatures and weather conditions naturally, develops muscles and stamina, build the immune system, etc.
Now, add to this having an Arctic Auk outdoor playhouse as a North Pole explorers base or an elevated tower playhouse that can be a lighthouse in the middle of a storm, and you will see how you kids eagerly choose to spend their time outdoors instead of being glued to the TV even on a gloomy or snowy day.
In this article, we shall talk more about why it is so important for kids to spend as much time as possible outside in any weather and how getting an outdoor playhouse can contribute to their healthy development.
Is It Safe for Kids to Spend Time in Outdoor Playhouses in Bad Weather?
Parents naturally prefer to keep kids indoors on rainy or cold days, being afraid that they will wet their feet, get cold, and fall sick eventually.
However, any paediatrician will tell you that kids actually don't get sick from cold weather. No one does. People become ill due to exposure to pathogens and viruses. It happens most often in fall, winter, or early spring simply because during those cold and wet months, we spend more time indoors with our windows shut and sealed and HVAC adjusted to healing all day long. Such conditions are perfect for the development of viruses and pathogens, and we willingly place ourselves in those incubators for several months in a row.
Your kid, however, is most likely to get sick after wetting their feet, however, because their body and immune system are not used to adjust healthily if the kid does not spend enough time outdoors. This "poor logistics" leads to the fact that until your kids systems detect the problem and start reacting, viruses and pathogens already set their camping sites inside their bodies.
To avoid it, you need to make sure that kids constantly "train" their immune system, get exposed to different weather conditions, and therefore teach their bodies to adjust naturally. It is like riding a bike. At first, you have to watch your every move and concentrate on keeping the balance. But some time later, your body simply "knows" what to do, and you can think about anything, sing or even talk to people on the move.
"Despite the forecast, live like it’s spring. "
- Lilly Pulitzer
However, parents who do encourage their kids to spend more time outdoors in any weather often face 2 main challenges:
- You have to pay extra attention to the safety of kids playing in the snow or jumping in muddy puddles due to slip-and-fall hazards;
- Even the most exciting game may become boring after several days, and you may have to find new ways to encourage kids to play outside instead of sticking back to their gadgets.
In both cases, an outdoor playhouse can be a perfect solution. A small bungalow or a wooden farmhouse in your backyard will motivate kids to get out of the house and keep them safe and sound.
Why Kids Playhouses are Even More Fun in Bad Weather
You may be surprised, but most families admit that even though they might have been skeptical about the idea, outdoor playhouses appeared even more fun and popular among kids in winter than in summer.
Here are only several reasons for that:
- Kids learn about weather and seasons – back in the day when people mostly lived in rural areas and farms. That way, kids got a chance to learn a lot about nature, the environment, and change of season, get the necessary skills to avoid dangers and stay safe in any weather. An outdoor playhouse can become an ultimate learning center for your kids, a place where they can bring and study samples of soil and plants observe how they change throughout the year. They can become naturalists, explorers, or brave treasure hunters in the middle of "the lost world" of your own backyard.
- Kids learn responsibility – of course, you keep an eye on your kids and make sure that they put on warm socks and wear scarves in cold weather. However, playing in an outdoor playhouse teaches them why exactly they do so. Therefore dressing appropriately becomes their own mindful choice, putting an end to the long fights about putting on a warmer jacket or wearing a hat on a windy day.
- Lower risk of disease and infections – as we have already mentioned, people get sick due to being exposed to numerous pathogens that flourish in poorly-ventilated rooms. Spending their days in a wooden playhouse with a stable natural airflow, your kids breathe clean, healthy air and have much lower risks to fall sick than those who "sell" themselves in a warm living room.
- Hours of excitement! – you may already know that an outdoor playhouse is an endless source of imaginative play ideas and inspiration for kids creativity and adventurous spirit. However, playing outdoors in "bad weather" can be even more exciting! Kids get a chance to recreate their favourite books and cartoons, turning their playhouse farmhouses into Elsa's castle or a bigfoot's cave in the middle of a snowy winter. Why not visit the Neverland or look for pirate's treasure with an elevated bungalow that will serve perfectly as a ship, a Nemo's submarine, or a lighthouse on a rainy day? The possibilities are endless and are even more exciting when an outdoor playhouse becomes a kids shelter and headquarters in the middle of a blizzard or tsunami… even if it is just a small rain drizzle.
Keeping Kids Safe in an Outdoor Playhouse
Of course, a wooden playhouse needs a certain level of attention, maintenance, and dedication to be absolutely safe for your kids to play there all year round.
And while high-quality wooden playhouses are made out of durable, eco-friendly materials, it is still essential to work out some basic annual maintenance schedule and winterize them properly:
- Check the wooden playhouse thoroughly every year and make sure to fix any cracks and leaks, stain and repaint it on time;
- Pay extra attention to the floors of your wooden playhouse. If the playhouse is not elevated, make sure to protect it from flooding and dry it out thoroughly if water still gets into the playhouse;
- Winterising the outdoor playhouse, pay extra attention to the roof and windows. Block all the leaks and cracks and keep an eye on those areas all year round as they may become a home for mold and fungus if the playhouse is neglected.
Above everything else, it is important to talk to your kids all the time; let them understand that you trust them to make their own decisions about staying safe in their outdoor playhouses.
Ask them what kind of clothes they are planning to wear today and why. Suggest keeping extra dry socks in a waterproof container in a playhouse. As for their assistance when you seal the leaks in the roof or winterize the windows of the kids playhouse.
That way, kids naturally learn to estimate risks, take responsibility for their actions, and see how everything they learn and experience about the change of seasons and cold weather during their playtime helps them in their everyday life.
Indeed, there is no such bad weather. There may be wrong clothes, prejudice, and misunderstandings that flourish when controversial opinions and data from media and the Internet meet "old wives` tales" and outdated misconceptions.
Kids do need to play outdoors all year round and especially in "bad weather." Getting wet and dirty and messy is essential for their development, not to mention how much fun it is. And if you have an outdoor playhouse, it will most likely take the beat of muddy shoes and wet socks rather than your own living room.
A wooden playhouse will encourage your kids imagination and creativity, provide endless scenarios for imaginative play and become a great shelter for your kids if the snow or rain becomes serious, but kids still want to keep on playing.
An outdoor playhouse is a means to pull kids outdoors as well as a way to keep them safe there. It is also a great bonding and educational experience for the whole family, as the seasonal maintenance of your wooden playhouse will become a fun and exciting project for everyone.
Order an outdoor playhouse for your kids today and see how they grow and flourish, building their best childhood memories and exploring the whole world in the safety of your backyard.
"Nature gives to every time and season some beauties of its own."
- Charles Dickens
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Written by WholeWoodPlayhouses