By now, most children have returned to school after the summer holidays – some may be happy to return to school and other pupils may miss the free time of the holidays. Playtime and playground activities are an important part of the day for key stage one students; giving them time to wind down from learning and bootheir imagination, and social skills.

In this blog post we discuss some great activities and playground equipment designed for KS1 school children.

KS1 Pupils in the Playground

KS1 pupils are children ages between 5 and 7. At this age, students typically have an hour-long break at school lunchtime. This break is an important one during the day as it helps children burn off pent up energy from the morning lessons and can help improve focus ready for afternoon classes.

Although the time is recreational, educational and skill developing activities and games should still be incorporated into the playground. Learning doesn’t mean boring and playground games are a great example of children learning through play.

Below is a list of playground activities and games for children in key stage one.

image shows a boy participating in playground activities

Simon Says

The old games simply are the best! Simon Says is a playground classic that has remained popular throughout time. The game is extremely easy to play and can be played in small groups or with bigger groups of children.

First, one child needs to be appointed as ‘Simon’ for the purpose of the game. They then give out instructions to the rest of the group with “Simon says” at the start of the sentence, for example; “Simon says stand on one leg”. The group must follow Simons instructions but only when the instruction is started with “Simon says” – if anyone carries out a task when Simon hasn’t said ‘Simon says’ they are then out of the game.

The game is very easy and great for kids of all abilities. It requires no special equipment and can be played anywhere in the playground.

Mud Kitchen Play

An increasingly popular playground activity for KS1 children is the addition of mud kitchens.

Wooden mud kitchens are a great way to introduce children to squelchy sensory fun whilst keeping the mess contained to one area. There are a multitude of benefits associated with this type of play too. From communication and language development to understanding the world around them, children engaging in this sort of play are bound to have great fun whilst developing crucial skills.

Even physical development can be aided by mud play – children will be holding utensils and large bowls (some of our mud kitchens come with bowls and equipment) and this helps to develop hand muscles which in turn supports fine motor skill development. Mixing, stirring and gathering ‘ingredients’ also boosts hand-eye coordination.

Physical Activities

Some children have more energy than others and the playground is the ideal place to burn off some of this energy with more physical activities such as ball games and climbing. Of course, many physical games require little equipment such as classic games such as ‘tag’ or simple baton relay races.

For the kids with lots of energy why not consider installing a bit of equipment that is a little more challenging for them? Our traverse climbing wall is ideal for KS1 pupils, providing plenty of fun challenges as children work out how to make their way from one end to the other. Climbing expends energy and is great for children’s muscle development, dexterity, and problem-solving abilities.

Group Activities

Social skills are developed in the playground by performing tasks together or playing simple games with other children.

Here are some of our favourite group activities

  • Sand pits – playing in the sand often involves communicating with other children and using the imagination. Our sliding lid sand pit is the ideal size for a small group of children.
  • Card games – playing cards are inexpensive, easy to use anywhere and there are literally hundreds of card games suitable for KS1 learners. Give the kids somewhere to sit and play cards with one of our seated play huts featuring a table and a roof.
  • Tug of war – a group game played for years in playgrounds, tug-of-war can be enjoyed by children and even adults but is especially fun for KS1 learners as it helps bring out their natural competitiveness and encourages team work.

Contact Discovering Days for More Playground Activity Ideas

At Discovering Days, we specialise in the design and manufacture of quality outdoor playground equipment made from robust timbers.

Browse our ready to buy range for KS1 learners for more inspiration and ideas.

You can contact us here for more information or you can call us on 01282 416 755 to discuss any of our bespoke or ‘off the shelf’ wooden playground equipment for schools and nurseries alike.

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