Summer Fun 2024- Stay Safe in the Sun

Outdoor fun in the sun is an important part of the school day for children. Enjoying play outdoors at break times aids in healthy physical development and improves students’ moods. However, in the Summer, limiting harmful sun exposure should be a key consideration for any outdoor play session. A sail canopy or shaded area for fun helps children enjoy the Summer in a safe way.

Therefore, sail shades, canopies and other outdoor shelters are crucial features of any playground looking to limit sun exposure while still providing a safe space to play outdoors.

Learn how to stay safe outdoors in the sun with our playground experts’ guide to sun-safe play. This blog details recommended playground shelters for schools, and how to responsibly supervise children while they are out enjoying the sunshine.

Dangers of Sun Exposure – How to Play Safely

In the Summer months, appropriate protection from the sun and caution around overexposure is vital to avoiding harm during outdoor play. Schools should take appropriate supervision measures to prevent sunburn and sunstroke during playtime. This includes providing water, ensuring breaks in the shade are taken, and checking children are regularly reapplying sun-cream.

A sheltered seating area on the playground is not just an important place for students. Having a cool, sheltered space on the playground benefits teachers too. As a hub for supervision and safety, a sheltered area keeps teachers cool as well as providing an outdoor storage space for any essential summer supplies. Playgrounds should include key items such as: spare sunglasses, sun hats, water bottles and other essentials to help children safely enjoy the sun

How much sunlight per day is recommended?

Daily exposure to sunlight helps to avoid vitamin D deficiencies that can cause a lot of problems for the healthy development and growth of children. The UK Skin Care Network recommends a maximum of half and hour for direct sun exposure. This limit helps to boost Vitamin D supply while avoiding harm to the skin from UVB radiation.

A Sail Canopy for Well-Protected Outdoor Activity and Play

As exciting as playing in the sun can be, playing in the shade with the help of school shelters can be just as fun. Children love to run around and use playground equipment in the sun. But additionally, providing shelters for the playground where they can enjoy activity while limiting sun exposure can help develop a healthy, happy play area.

Sail awnings or sail shades create an open shaded area where play is not limited by a lack of space. With a canvas sail suspended on sturdy poles, sail shades are unintrusive to play, creating a space in which children can run or rest.

Large sun shade sails can cover children’s play areas while still letting light in from the sides due to the angle of installation. Our team can install these in a variety of sizes and shapes at different heights and angles as required.

Accessibility is key for any playground or outdoor area, and a raised sail canopy is a great option to promote accessibility. Unlike some enclosed shelter options with minimal room to manoeuvre mobility aids, a freestanding sail shelter creates an open area of playground safe from the sun and rain where wheelchair users can play and move around.

Playground Shelters for School Outdoor Learning

Enclosed areas with windows and Perspex roofs are also a great asset for the playground. Translucent Perspex roof panelling lets in natural light, promoting Vitamin D production and encouraging alertness, while still providing protection from harmful sun rays.

Customised shelters with bespoke windows, roofs, blinds, and fencing can create multi-use shelters for both play and learning. For an exciting and vibrant outdoor classroom, we recommend coloured roof panelling which tints natural light to create colourful shadows that kids love.

Outdoor teaching canopies are a great opportunity to bring kids outside to learn and play without overexposure to the sun. A patio sail canopy with decking and benches creates an open but shaded space for learning. Outdoor lesson-time under one of these structures helps to engage students with a new environment, helping to wake them up after a long day or get them excited to learn something new.

Is your Playground Prepared for the Summer Sun?

If your school requires new shelters or any other equipment to help your students enjoy outdoor play safely, The School Playground Company has your back! Get your Free Quick Quote or book a call using the contact form at the top of the page and we’ll get back to you to start your journey towards your ideal playground.

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