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Increasing Play Value with Sensory Play

How Sensory Playground Equipment Positively Affects Play

New research from KOMPAN Play Institute shows that sensory play items and sensory playground equipment increases play value and play duration in toddlers.

Sensory playground equipment is play equipment that stimulates a key sense - touch, sight, or hearing - to engage children. Sensory play can be especially enticing for younger children. Including sensory elements in your playground project can enrich the play experience by fully immersing children in the environment. Toddlers learn and develop skills through outdoor play. But what is the right play stimulation level to ensure development and learning whilst avoiding overstimulation?

KOMPAN Play Institute set out to examine how sensory playground features affected and stimulated toddlers' play. Observations were done on children from the age of 1 to 4 years old at an early years setting in Denmark. The findings were in many ways surprising! Read them in our whitepaper through the link below. 

Increasing Play Value with Sensory Play

5 considerations

5 Design Considerations for Group and Pretend Play in Toddlers

  1. Use the right ergonomic measures for toddlers: Make sure that they can reach, manipulate, look over or into items such as mirrors.

  2. Choose rich tactile and manipulative items for exploration and pretend play: Vary materials and functionalities in play features, e.g. soft and hard materials, movable and stationary items.

  3. Use themes that toddlers recognise (e.g. house, window, mirror, watch, desk, curtain).

  4. Create open, ground level based units that allow play from outside as well as inside.

  5. Sectioned functionalities in units: play panels with or without features make for varied play opportunities.