Want to give your child the best start in life? Explore HipKids’ full range of sandboxes and sandpit toys and help your child reap the benefits of outdoor sensory play.
When it comes to sensory play - it’s never too soon to start
From the time that babies are still in the womb, their senses are developing, and throughout their first year of life, they continue to develop at a rapid pace. As they continue to grow into toddlers, it’s important to offer lots of opportunities for sensory play to support language development, enhance memory, foster cognitive growth and help to develop both fine and gross motor skills. While young children shouldn’t be left to play on their own in a sandbox, (read more about what you should know about sandpit ownership here (Link to article as per brief)), you can sit with your child and introduce them to the different sensations that can be created with sand. This play pot and pan set is a great option for teaching your child how to scoop up sand, mix it in the pot or watch the sand sift through the spatula.
Sandpit play for children with developmental or sensory delays
The many proven health benefits of outdoor play are often talked about. However, did you know that creating safe, enjoyable sensory play opportunities for children on the Autism spectrum, or for those who have other non-neurotypical sensory needs, can be extremely therapeutic and calming as well? Spending time outdoors can have huge stress reducing benefits if a child is overly anxious or frustrated. If your child is uneasy about getting dirty, or getting into a sandpit, try this 2 in 1 sand/ water picnic table. This allows children to handle the sand (and water) with just their hands - or sandpit toys, without having to sit in an actual sand box.
For instant fun, just add water!
For the best sensory play experiences, don’t be afraid to let your kids get a little messy. And let’s face it - is there anything more fun for a kid than playing with mud? Watering cans, buckets and anything else that can hold or pour water make excellent sand accessories for making rivers, dams, and even mud pies! Your child will be able to experience the textural differences between warm, dry sand and cool, wet sand, and learn to solve problems and practise fine motor skills along the way.
Let your child create a whole new world in their own backyard
No matter how big or small your garden is, little minds can create a world of possibilities in any space. Sand play allows your child to build castles, dig for treasure (these little monster blocks are perfect for burying) or transform into any character they choose. Let them open a restaurant with their very own mud kitchen and make delicious drinks with this wooden smoothie set, or build roads and set off on new adventures with this 3 piece vehicle set. For more creative sensory fun, have your child do a treasure hunt around the yard to collect sticks, rocks and feathers in this classic toy wagon and incorporate all of the pieces into their very own sand masterpiece.
Is there really a sixth sense?
When it comes to sensory play, many people believe that there is actually one more sense that should be considered - balance. In a sandbox, children can get a sense of what it’s like to move around in the sand and walk on ground that shifts and is uneven. By challenging their sense of balance, children learn how to navigate their bodies in new environments. The good news is that if your little one falls over in the sandbox, they are very unlikely to get hurt. To challenge their sense of balance and movement further, have them try their hand at using this Kids Steel Ride-On Excavator. Ride-on sandpit toys not only help to develop a sense of balance, but also require precision to accomplish goals, making them excellent tools to help develop hand-eye coordination.
Tight on space? There’s a sandbox for that!
Short on room? No need to worry. Options like this self-contained wooden sandbox have a small footprint but are big on style and function. With convenient benches that double as storage compartments for sandpit toys, and a built-in chalkboard, your child’s imagination can run wild for hours. The Emerson Cubby House is another great space-saving choice with an elevated cubby house and sandpit below. With cover from sun and rain, sandpit play has never been more fun!