Daycare play area material

posted 2 years ago in Parenting
  • poll: My daycare center uses (for a majority of the play space)...
    Grass or Dirt : (3 votes)
    17 %
    Man made product like shredded rubber or rubber mat : (3 votes)
    17 %
    Sand (course or fine) (not in a 'sand box') : (0 votes)
    Pea stone (small pebble size) : (0 votes)
    Gravel--small 1" rocks : (3 votes)
    17 %
    Wood-- mulch, bark or chips) : (3 votes)
    17 %
    Other (explain below) : (1 votes)
    6 %
    Mixture (explain below) : (2 votes)
    11 %
    No kids in daycare, just want to vote because polls are fun! : (3 votes)
    17 %
  • Post # 2
    Member
    1344 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: January 2015

    The centre that I work at has wood chips covering the playground. It depends on what the licensing requirements are in your area. Usually it just needs to be a “soft” ground cover so many inches deep. 

    When I was growing up, our playground was covered with those pebbles. They are softer than you would imagine because there is give to them when you land on them. 

    I would look up what the licensing requirements are. You can also maybe look up past inspection reports about the daycare. If it was a concern it would be in there. But besides that, kids will throw anything – wood chips, pebbles, toys, dirt, sand, water, etc. Teachers do their best, but you can’t prevent kids from throwing things 100% of the time.

    Post # 4
    Member
    1344 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: January 2015

    KoiKove:  sorry, I didn’t mean to come across as patronizing. The wood chips at our place get thrown all the time. Kids are constantly getting slivers from walking and playing in them. I don’t think the wood chips are the best option, but I don’t know if any ground cover is perfect.

    Post # 6
    Member
    1344 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: January 2015

    KoiKove:  

    I didn’t even think about the size of the stone and ending up in ears and noses, but that is a good point and probably has happened in the past.

    That sucks that you don’t have access to the legislation. Here in BC, the legislation for child care facilities is posted online. They also have the inspection reports for all licensed centres for the whole province available. You are able to see which centres have more violations and which ones are well regulated. I guess if you were really interested in finding out the specific requirements, you could try phoning the licensing organization to find the information.

    Post # 7
    Member
    3350 posts
    Sugar bee

    I don’t have kids, but I did work for awhile at a daycare with those stones in our playground…sure, kids threw them sometimes but it was a big no no and usually got shut down pretty quickly. I’ve seen plenty of kids fall on them, and no one got seriously injured (a scraped knee here or there but nothing worse than falling on any other surface). And I have to say, kids LOVED playing with those rocks. They would collect ‘pretty’ ones and have treasure hunts, fill buckets and shake them around, stack them, bury things in them- it was almost like another sensory play area, LOL.

    Anyway, the stones never caused a big issue where I worked, and if your child is young (like 3 and under probably) there shouldn’t be anything tall enough in their play area to seriously hurt them if they took a tumble off it, rocks or no. 

    Post # 8
    Member
    1878 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2013 - Valparaiso, IN

    I’m sure they have a rule that prohibits the kids throwing rocks at each other. I know that doesn’t stop it completely, but I can’t imagine how many rocks would have been thrown at the daycare I worked at if we didn’t continually remind the kids to stop. The daycare I worked at had pea stones. And the kids would occasionally throw them, but at 2 you have pretty bad aim so the kids never got hurt because of it. 

    Post # 10
    Member
    2580 posts
    Sugar bee

    They make a playground  safe rubber pieces we used them in our garden.

    Post # 12
    Member
    4413 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: June 2012

    Our daughter’s daycare has wood chips out at the playground for the bigger kids, and then the toddler play zone is just grass.

    When we were touring the toddler area in preparation for DD moving up there in a couple weeks, the teacher said that when it rains, all the kids play in the covered play area with the wood chips, and she said “with the little kids, mostly we just try to keep them from eating the wood chips.” This is not at all helpful in answering your question, but I thought it was hilarious so I’m sharing it. I just imagine them herding 10 toddlers outside “to play” but really the kids aren’t playing; they’re all just trying to be quick enough to eat wood chips before the teachers have a chance to stop them.

    Post # 13
    Member
    1878 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2013 - Valparaiso, IN

    KoiKove:  yes. But at least they weren’t actually throwing them. I think with any material you’re going to have some sort of problem. Rocks and milk you can throw and put in your mouth. Cement is hard and dangerous to fall on. You can get really dirty with grass, sand or dirt. The rubber mat would be the safest tumbling wise. But you wouldn’t get to use it on really hot days because it gets really hot to the touch and causes an even hotter playing environment.

    Post # 15
    Member
    11668 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 1999

    The material itself wouldn’t deter me, but how the teacher’s handled it (or didn’t) would…

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