Water Play

Did you grow up with sprinklers in the back yard?  I have fond memories of spending hot summer days running and jumping through the spray with my sister.  I remember those long green tube-like sprinklers, and the groovy ones that could spin around. I even remember being allowed to run through the sprinklers on the school oval when temperatures reached over 35 deg C.  And then of course there was slip’n’slide

My kids don’t even know what a sprinkler is.  Water restrictions have been in place for years here in Queensland, and despite the odd flood or cyclone – the grass is still so brown and dry around Brisbane that it crackles under the kids’ feet.  So can you imagine how excited we are that water restrictions have been eased for a week?!

If it’s been a while since your kids enjoyed water play, try some of these ideas:

  • Run through the sprinkler.  Make sure you move the sprinkler around the yard every so often so that the garden gets a good watering too.  And for those also in SE Qld, don’t forget that sprinklers do use a lot of water, and we still have to pay for the extra water we use this week.
  • Washing up.  This is one of those tasks that mums detest and kids love.  Take a big bowl outside filled with water and a little dishwashing detergent.  Let the kids wash duplo blocks, playdough cutters, dolls, plastic cars, whatever you like. Just sit everything on a towel in the sun to dry.
  • Water fights.  Depending on the age of your kids, you might like to try soaking each other with spray bottles, water pistols, water balloons or even just the hose.  Kids love it when parents get involved too.
  • Water walls.  I have seen several posts (via Let The Children Play) and pinterest pics lately featuring water walls.  I think my kids would really enjoy the challenge of designing their own wall somewhere outside.
  • Free creative play.  Often the best fun is the fun you make yourself.  Simply put out an assortment of objects and a large container of water, or hose with a trigger nozzle, and see what your kids come up with!  They are bound to entertain themselves.
  • Bring back the slip’n’slide!  (Just remember that little bodies cope with slippin’ and slidin’ far better than grownup bodies.  A trip down memory lane could result in a trip to the hospital.)

What other water activities do your kids enjoy?  Share in the comments below so that we can all try them!

10 thoughts on “Water Play

  1. Fantastic ideas! I’m particularly enthralled with the kids wash up idea! The first hot day and the kids are going to be out the back with all their grubby toys having a big wash up! I’ve been meaning to get around to it for awhile!

  2. We bought a slip n slide last summer and the girls have been asking to get it out again. I even had a go one really hot day (in my clothes) and we ended up with half the neighbourhood kids in our backyard. Lots of fun!

  3. I remember those days too! We don’t even own a sprinkler but would love to run through one with my little man. I use some plastic ikea boxes and put them on a table outside, then fill with water for water play. I love the idea of “painting” with just water and a brush too.

  4. We’re in Brisbane too and have been enjoying the sprinkler run. We’re also going to play “wash the deck”, “water blast the grotty paths” and turn our slippery slide into a water slide.

  5. yes, we often do the slip and slide or sprinklers here. Other ideas are Spray bottle with water so they can “clean” their bike/wall etc.
    Washing the car can be wet fun.
    Fill drums/clam shells/mini pool with water and let them go – even 8 yr olds love it.
    I’ve often got out the tea set with water and cooled cooked spaghetti (lots of play and eating options usually follwed by spaghetti throwing fight!
    “Swim” in the bath with cold water.

    Enjoy your week of eased restrictions!

  6. Yes we do all of these! Water play is regular at our place. Buckets/containers of water get filled up, sponges, clothes, measuring cups come out. We fill up the sink, put on aprons & the kids “do the dishes”. Cleaning the windows. Also paint brushes & water are used to paint the fence. Then there is just the good old kiddy pool.

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