As schools close for the summer, encourage your students to engage in active play by visiting a public playground. To be sure kids are being safe, as public playgrounds are not often monitored, clearly outline playground safety rules. Having these expectations ensures each individual on the playground is being safe, responsible, and concerned about themselves and others. Here are 5 rules to help keep kids active and safe on the playground.
Do Not Use the Playground When Wet
Most playgrounds are made of plastisol-coasted decks and powdered-coated steel posts which become slippery when wet. We recommend waiting until you can no longer see water droplets on the equipment. Playing on a wet playground can result in injury or slipping from a height.
No Other Equipment on the Playground
While it might seem like a great idea to bring other equipment like dodgeballs, dolls, books, scooters, etc. onto the play structure it can result in serious injury. We encourage students to use their imagination or dramatic play skills while on the playground.
Shoes Are Required
Most play structures have porous steel decks that are uneven and unsafe for bare feet. Play events like rock climbing, uneven steps, and ladder are tough on bare feet as well. Also worth noting, if you are barefoot amongst those with shoes on, you risk your toes being stepped on. We encourage students to go shoes free in the grass or mud away from others!
Though it may be tempting to run or chase after friends on the playground equipment there is protentional for students to trip, collide, or fall off equipment. We suggest encouraging tag, chasing, and running on the solid ground.
The most important rule of all is to be sure your students are kind over their summer break, especially on shared spaces such as the playground or play structures. Kindness includes sharing equipment, waiting turns, and playing well with others.
As you share these rules with your students, also consider your location, the equipment, and any other common problems showcased. We also encourage your community to advertise the playground rules among the play space and online.