Sandboxes, loose parts, and playground equipment: a descriptive exploration of outdoor play environments
loose parts, outdoor play environments, playground materials, playground safety, Playgrounds
Early Child Development and Care
The purpose of the study was to examine outdoor environments to understand whether or not young children had access to play materials and loose parts to enhance their playful experiences. This study sought to gather the availability of SAFE and quality play opportunities in early childhood outdoor environments. The study took place in one state of the United States. The study found 75% of outdoor spaces had a playground structure that including a place for children to climb and slide down. The study found 83% of programs had appropriate surfacing materials provided in the outdoor play environment. Loose parts, such as toys, balls, and action figures were also included in the outdoor play and learning environment. The significance of play that this study shows is outdoor environments have an abundant opportunities to support the developmental characteristics of children.
Department of Health, Recreation, and Community Services
National Program for Playground Safety
Original Publication Date
DOI of published version
UNI ScholarWorks, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa
Olsen, Heather and Smith, Brandy, "Sandboxes, loose parts, and playground equipment: a descriptive exploration of outdoor play environments" (2017). Faculty Publications. 868.