Outdoor Features That’ll Improve the Success of Your Daycare Business

Owning and operating a daycare involves much more than just providing a clean and safe space for children. It also creates an environment that supports cognitive and social development.

One way to encourage such an enriching environment is by making sure your daycare has intentionally designed outdoor features. Well-planned outdoor spaces can augment any learning environment and encourage active play and learning.

Understanding the Importance of Outdoor Spaces

Outdoor spaces extend children the opportunity to explore and learn in a setting that is different from a traditional learning space. According to a report from the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2015, 51% of three- to five-year-olds attended full-day preschool programs.

Given this significant number, daycare centers are critical participants in a child’s early education and social development. Outdoor spaces provide an alternative location for kids to engage in physical activities and hands-on learning experiences.

Creating Picnic Areas

Picnic areas should be dynamic and enhance the learning experience at a daycare center. Properly designed picnic tables cater to the needs of children, teachers, and adults who might visit. The dimensions of picnic tables are crucial for comfort and accessibility.

A table height ranging from 28 to 32 inches ensures ease of use for adults, while benches positioned 17 to 18 inches off the ground provide ample space for comfortable seating. With 10 to 14 inches of space between the bench and tabletop, individuals can get in and out without any difficulty.

Promoting Outdoor Dining and Social Interaction

In addition to well-designed, utilitarian picnic tables, the physical space for outdoor dining should encourage healthy habits and foster social interaction. When kids eat in an environment that is clean and well-organized, they develop healthy eating habits. An added bonus is they soak up the social benefits of sharing meals.

Presenting Child-Friendly Swimming Pools

Swimming pools are not only recreational but they are also educational. Teaching children valuable and potentially life-saving water safety skills, an outdoor pool is just another extension of the traditional daycare learning space. According to Ruby Home, 36% of children swim in a pool at least six times a year. Incorporating a child-friendly pool in your daycare facility offers a unique feature. This helps set your facility apart from the competition.

The inclusion of a pool at your daycare requires safety considerations. The pool area should be securely fenced and alarmed. Obviously, this area would also need to be closely supervised by trained staff at all times. Swimming lessons and water safety skills can add value for parents and caregivers. You want to keep in mind that not all parents are willing to pay for the additional cost that comes with learning these skills in a secure environment.

Engaging Play Structures and Learning Stations

Play structures can transform outdoor spaces into wonderlands of imagination and exploration. Incorporating age-appropriate equipment encourages physical activity, hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, imagination, and cognitive development.

Incorporating Nature-Based Learning Environments

Setting up gardens allows children to learn about plants and flowers. They can experience growing their own food. Daycare centers that seek to connect children to outdoor spaces celebrate nature. In addition, incorporating natural elements like rocks, sandboxes, and areas for water play provides highly sensory experiences that stimulate cognitive development.

Parent Friendly Amenities

Parent-Friendly Amenities are the secret trick that can make your daycare stand out and make parents super happy. It’s all about thinking of the moms and dads too, not just the little ones.

Go for comfy waiting areas with cozy chairs, maybe some free Wi-Fi because parents need to stay connected, and a coffee station to keep them awake and fueled. You could also have clear communication boards, so they know what’s going on with their kids throughout the day.

These little extras show that you care about the parents as much as their children. And that can really set your daycare apart and keep parents coming back with smiles on their faces.

Childproof Locks and Padded Surfaces

Think of safety signs like road signs that show you what to do or not do when you’re driving. In a daycare, safety signs are friendly reminders for adults about how to keep kids safe. Childproof locks on gates are like special locks that only grown-ups can open. They make sure that kids can’t go outside on their own and get into places they shouldn’t.

Padded surfaces serve a purpose too. Sometimes kids can accidentally fall while playing. Padded surfaces are super soft cushions on the ground underneath the swings and slides. They are there to catch kids if they fall, like a big, comfy pillow. It keeps them from getting hurt if they have a little tumble.

Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance of the outdoor day care is like taking care of a bicycle. Just like you need to check the tires and brakes to make sure your bike works safely, places like daycare centers need to check their play equipment and buildings regularly. They do this to make sure everything is in good shape and safe for kids to use.

So, maintenance means fixing or cleaning things if they’re broken or messy. It’s making sure your care center is in tip-top shape for children.

Maintaining clean and well-kept outdoor areas in a daycare facility involves constant upkeep and cleanliness practices to ensure a safe and aesthetically pleasing environment. Similar to the appeal of a meticulously maintained park.

These measures entail the regular removal of debris, such as toys, leaves, and litter, from play spaces and the surrounding premises. This diligent approach aims to create an environment that is inviting, hygienic, and conducive to children’s play and learning experiences.


Incorporating thoughtfully designed outdoor features can remarkably impact the success of your daycare business. Outdoor spaces provide children with teachable moments for social development and hands-on learning.

Including functional picnic areas in nature-based learning environments is just one way outdoor features contribute to holistic learning. Children will flourish under your care. By creating a safe and enriching outdoor environment, you can stand out. Your dedication to fostering growth and safe exploration will propel you far ahead of the competition.


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