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Helpful Information

Helpful Information

What are they?

What do they cost?

Is money available?

Construction Information!

Is a catalog available?

Common questions

Outdoor education

A child's perspective

Natural play articles

Natural play links

Natural play research

News & Articles

Outdoor Breaks Improve Grades!

Natural Playgrounds Maintenance

Music in Learning

Gardening is Good!

Encouraging Safe Risk

Physical Fitness Linked to Brain Fitness

THE UNSAFE CHILD: Less Outdoor Play is Causing More Harm than Good

Questions about the minimum outdoor square footage requirements for each child at a childcare center.

Natural Playground coming to Grant Elementary School

Nothing Lasts Forever,
except natural playgrounds!

Webster Groves is home to Missouri's first "Natural Playground"

New Study Proves Natural Playgrounds Beneficial and Inspirational!

A Natural Playground Makes A Difference!

Natural playgrounds are best choice in tight economy



How may we help?

Email us here
with your questions,
or to ask about
our services.

Please include the name
of school, center, or park,
and your city.

NPC will respond
shortly by email.

Common Questions

      How Are Natural Playgrounds Different?

We are all curious about the natural world and how it works. There is very little in our lives that is unaffected by nature. Weather dictates our choice of clothes, our buildings battle the elements, food comes from the soil, dams hold water for power, and we sleep when the sun goes down.

When thunder rolls, or frost forms on a window pane, or a rivulet of water takes a new course, or a leaf falls, or a bee lands on a flower, or wind blows hair or makes a leaf tornado, kids of all ages want to know why.

Why is the sky blue? Why does the rain make noise? Where does the water go? How do you make bricks? How do you make a lean-to out of sticks? Where do ants go? Why is grass hollow? How come things grow? Why is a caterpillar fuzzy? How do you build an igloo? Why does it feel cozy crawling under a bush? Why is it so exciting to run through the grass? How can a conversation with a friend feel so intimate when we’re sitting on a log right in the middle of things?

Young people should be learning about these things when they’re outside, not just when they’re taking a class, but also when they’re relaxing or playing.

Natural play areas use natural landscapes as their model, and incorporate as many of the following features as possible:

  • Topography is sculptured, transformed to include berms, stone walls, sand pits, water courses, mud areas, and natural amphitheaters.
  • Vegetation is enhanced by indigenous, summer and winter trees, shrubs, herbs, flowers, vegetables, and other garden plants, all of which should be designed to attract wildlife.
  • Landscaping includes boulders, levels and tiers, park benches, rain gardens, path systems, grassy areas.
  • Structures include gazebos, pergolas, arbors, gateways, shade tents, furniture, game tables, and climbing walls.
  • Outdoor Art starts with a well-designed framework for the entire play area and then includes mural walls, play sculpture, sound gardens, land and vegetative sculptures, and reflecting "pools."
  • Learning tools include sundials, rain gauges, nature trails, and lots of loose parts.

Play areas include places for old-fashioned games, group sports, and challenge and fitness courses.


Please contact The Natural Playgrounds Company® to discuss your thoughts and plans. We welcome your inquiries and will get back in touch with you promptly.
Thank you for spending some time with us today.

(Don't forget to check out our online store of natural play elements!
Click HERE to go there now!)