As technology develops further, it has increasingly become a challenge to detach us from our phones and tablets to embrace the outdoors.
Recently there has been a heightened focus on influencing children to appreciate the outdoors from a young age.
In 2019 the Duchess of Cambridge co-designed the Back to Nature Garden for RHS Chelsea. She urged the importance of families and their children spending time outside,
“In recent years I have focused much of my work on the Early Years, and how instrumental they are for outcomes later in life…I believe that spending time outdoors when we are young can play a role in laying the foundations for children to become happy, healthy adults.”
Creating a landscape suitable for a growing family, where both children and adults can get their hands and knees dirty digging in soil, cooking outside, along with a variety of other activities not only bonds them, but also boosts both physical and mental health.
For International Family Day, create a space in the garden that encourages young children to heighten their senses, whilst increasing their physical health through outdoor play and lowering their stress levels.
One way is to plant a sensory garden, designed to boost sense of touch, taste and smell. Plant herbs such as rosemary and lavender; they smell beautiful and taste great in a meal.
For tranquillity and calm, add a water feature to the garden. In a traditional garden, use a sandstone drilled sphere; the water gently trickles over the top of it, or, for a contemporary twist, create a water wall using porcelain cladding and a rill.
Children and adults love to bond over getting their hands messy, typically by baking a cake! For International Family Day, it’s time to get outside. Encourage children to dig in soil and plant herbs or vegetables. It’s not only fun but provides them with a greater sense of responsibility. Furthermore, should vegetables such as carrots and beetroots be planted, they can be made into create carrot and/or beetroot cakes.
Zones within a garden space can achieve lots of things: child safety, relaxation for both children and adults, and a place for all the family to enjoy.
Create a zone for children to play that is fun and safe. Climbing equipment and toys are great for children to learn coordination (physical development) and logic (mental development); for example, which way up the climbing frame is the quickest! Within playing zones, avoid laying paving near equipment. For safety, stick to soft surfaces. Alternatively, should there be paving nearby, ensure it is maintained properly; check that the paving doesn’t wobble when walked upon and there are no cracks that could be a trip hazard.
A zone for an outdoor kitchen not only is a place for families to bond over cooking, but also for relaxation. Use porcelain paving to create an outdoor kitchen, complete with a worktop or bar for preparing food and serving drinks. Porcelain paving does not absorb moisture, making it ideal for cleaning up any spillages.
After a day of activities in the garden, finish International Family Day by relaxing with marshmallows around a firepit. Not only are they a gorgeous focal point, they are an inviting space within the garden, which can be used all year round. Use natural stone or porcelain paving or pavers that is cut to size to create a beautiful outer lining of your fire pit.
Global Stone provide natural stone and porcelain paving for any type of landscape. For inspiring spaces for International Family Day, look at our 2020 brochure.