Play houses are a great way to encourage creative play in children of all ages from toddlers to pre-teens. All children naturally learn by copying the people around them and ‘playing house’ is an important part of their creative development. Children also love to have a small space of their own and will happily spend hours constructing blanket forts or hidden away in secret places in the garden.
You can buy playhouses in all shapes and sizes ranging from tent style plastic constructions to spacious wooden cabins. When deciding what type of house to buy for your children, first consider the space you have and where it will be used. If you live in a cold climate or have little or no outdoor space, an indoor playhouse is the sensible option. Indoor houses are usually easy and quick to construct and dismantle so that you do not have to leave them up the whole time. When your kids are finished playing you can pack them away and reclaim the floor space. Indoor play houses are usually constructed like a tent, with a plastic frame and a cover made from fabric or plastic that can be rolled or folded up for easy storage. These types of houses come in all kinds of shapes and designs so you can choose a Native American teepee or a traditional country cottage, depending on the preferences of your child.
On the other hand, if your children spend a lot of time playing outdoors and you have a reasonably sized garden, an outdoor playhouse is the way to go. Outdoor playhouses are typically more sturdy than their indoor cousins are and can be a permanent fixture or put up and taken down whenever the mood arises. Play houses for use outdoors are usually made from plastic or wood. The wooden versions are intended to be left up once they are built and a wooden playhouse is usually an attractive addition to your garden. They come in a range of sizes and can resemble a shed or wood cabin or even a miniature version of a traditional wooden house.
When you’re considering what size of house to buy, think about the age of your child, how many children will usually be playing inside and how much space you have either inside or outside your home. Older children will need a bigger play house and if you have more than two children or your child frequently has friends over to visit, you will probably want to consider a bigger version also. Make sure you have enough room for potential playhouses before you buy them. A good way to do this is to make a paper cutout of the floor area of your chosen play house and place it on the floor to see how much room it takes up.
Your child will probably become quite protective of their new house and want to decorate it to their own styles and interests. Encourage them to put up their own artwork on the walls and you can even paint the inside or outside of a wooden play house, just like you would with a child’s bedroom. Make the house into a cozy hideaway for your child by supplying extras like curtains, a bright rug or even some potted plants. Children will love taking care of their own space and having somewhere just for them that they can retreat to and play, draw or read.
A playhouse for your child is truly a gift that will inspire creativity and be enjoyed by your children for many years. There are play houses available for every budget and every size of home so there is no reason not to buy one today!