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Inspiring Outdoor Play Spaces – The Imagination Tree


Inspiring Outdoor Play Spaces – The Imagination Tree

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Be inspired by these totally amazing ideas for outdoor play spaces, with dens, nooks, climbing structures, mud kitchens, imaginative small world play and more! The one-stop shop for finding play space inspiration for your backyard, garden or outdoor classroom!

Over on my Imagination Tree FB page I often share inspirational images and ideas for outdoor play and learning, as nature play and creativity is one of my biggest passions as both a teacher and educator. Not surprisingly, these ideas are so popular with all my readers and I’ve decided to round up the best ones into visual collections so that you can find them all in one places and refer back to them frequently when you need more ideas!

They’re being featured in photo collages with the links to the actual projects below each one.

56 incredibly inspiring outdoor play spaces for kids!

Firstly, let’s get inspired by these gorgeous outdoor cooking areas and mud kitchens! There are SO many of these around to be inspired by at the moment, but these particular ones caught my eye for being child-sized and natural in their set up. There are also some lovely storage baskets for displaying loose materials in easy distance.

Clockwise:

Pallet kitchen and sink

Hanging Baskets

Mud Pie Station

Cooking in the woods

Next let’s look at these amazing play structures! If only I had the space for some of these!

Clockwise:

Climbing Wall Play House

Log house

Tree stump table and chairs

Amazing tree house

Dens, forts and nooks are amongst my absolute favourite type of outdoor playspace for kids! These are all wonderful and use a great range of materials. The sandpit in a boat is simply genius too, as is the natural climbing and sliding structure- perfect!

Clockwise:

Sand Pit Boat

Bean teepee

Natural climbing frame

Den Building

Natural Reading Nook

Living Willow Den

Here are some more, similarly inspiring large play structures and dens.

Clockwise:

Metal bridge

Willow teepee

Outdoor learning area

Natural puppet theatre

More wonderful features to add to the outdoor play and learning environments! How incredible is that boat and the puddle jumping! Perfection.

Clockwise:

Hobbit play structure (amazing!)

Bridge for wheeled toys

Giant puddle jumping play

I would love to see every one of these in every outdoor classroom! Shallow streams are my kids absolute favourite place to play!

Clockwise:

House divider

Shallow stream and bridge

Natural play structure

Natural loose parts and a mirror

And these are just irresistible little seating and small world play areas!

Clockwise:

Tyre small worlds

Cable reel small worlds

Planter small world

Logs for cooking play

Toadstool seats

Log table and chairs

And these are some of the most inspiring ideas for diverse small world play I’ve seen! The ball chutes wall is awesome too for so many motor skills.

Clockwise:

Car tunnels

Train tracks in planters

Dinosaur shelves

Tree stumps and animals

Ball chute wall

Nature small world tray

And here are yet more fantastic mud kitchens, car ramps and free play spaces! Inspiring.

Clockwise:

Upcycled spool table

Outdoor kitchen space

Guttering play

Loose parts in construction play

Lastly, how wonderful are these DIY additions to the backyard playspace?! Brilliant.

Clockwise:

Shower curtain reading nooks

DIY chalkboard

Up-cycled chairs for imaginative play

Construction site digging pit

And here are some fun ideas for outdoor play and learning from my own site right here too!

Construction site gravel pit

Dinosaur Sensory Garden

Make a play garden

Plant a vegetable garden together

DIY concoctions kitchen

Still not enough ideas?! Come and follow my Outdoor Play and Learning Pinterest Board too!

If you enjoyed this outdoor play spaces post please pin it for easy reference in future!

See all our other outdoor play ideas here in the archives!

Family Activity Area. Integrating a kids area in the design itself #gardening #gardeningideas #garden #gardenideas #landscapegarden #moderngarden #contemporarygarden #homeimprovement #kidsgarden #playhouse

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