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Backyard Ideas for Kids

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backyard fun for kidsAs a parent, you know how important outdoor play is for your child’s development and overall well-being. But persuading your kids to leave video games and go out to play can be difficult if you don’t have a kid-friendly yard. Luckily, with the right backyard ideas for kids, you can transform your dull garden into an epic playground.

There are countless crafty projects that can transform your backyard, regardless of its size, into an endless source of entertainment. However, in order for a project to be a true success, get your kids involved and make sure to include some of their ideas.

In this article, I’ll go over some of the most popular backyard playground ideas that are easy to make and don’t cost much.

Fun Playground Ideas for a Small Garden

No matter how small your backyard is, there is always enough room to get creative and transform it into a great source of entertainment for your kids. If you don’t know how to start, some of these cool backyard ideas for kids will inspire you for sure!

1. Chalkboard Wall

Most kids like to draw with chalk, but no matter how talented your child is, you may not enjoy scrubbing chalk from your patio every other day. But, you can set up a few chalkboards on the backyard fence or a wall and give your kid enough space to channel their inner Picasso. If your house allows, you can also paint a blank wall with chalkboard paint. Try our favorite, DIY Chalkboard Paint by American Crafts on Amazon.

2. Backyard Teepee

All kids love to build playhouses using pillows, blankets, chairs, or anything else they can put their hands on. An outdoor teepee-style tent won’t take up much room and will transform your small garden into a fun playing area for your kids. Building a tepee is one of the cheapest backyard playground ideas and you can use old pallets or wooden poles and extra fabric that has been lying around the house.

If you’re not so handy and opt for the easier option of purchasing a backyard teepee, we love the Lavievert Indian Canvas Teepee on Amazon for outdoor play. The canvas is made for the elements, the inside is spacious, and it’s easily portable with a handy bag.

3. Climbing Wall

Besides being ideal for small spaces, a climbing wall is a great source of entertainment for kids and will keep them exercised. Furthermore, you can also use it and have a fun time exercising with your children. As a safety measure, line the ground with rubber playground tiles or a mattress that will absorb the falls.

4. Sandbox

DIY backyard ideas for kidsBuilding sandcastles or just digging in the sand is good ol’ traditional fun for kids under the age of five. Your child will love the idea of having a personal sandbox in the backyard and you can easily build one. For small gardens, paint and repurpose an old cabinet into a one-of-a-kind sandbox.

Popular Kids Playground Ideas for a Medium-Sized Garden

These backyard ideas for kids are easy to make, don’t cost much, and will turn your everyday garden into every child’s dream playground. To make things even more interesting, incorporate several ideas and even add an inflatable bounce house.

1. Swing

cheap backyard playground ideasSwings never go out of fashion, and kids of all ages simply love them. Best of all, you can make a swing easily and in many different ways; the simplest is probably using an old chair and a sturdy hemp rope. Alternatively, you can make a tire swing. Paint an old tire with your child’s favorite colors and attach it to a tree. Or, attach a chain to a piece of wood for a simple, easy swing your child will love.

2. A Cushioned Seesaw

If you like DIY projects, you can easily build a sturdy seesaw in your backyard and spend some quality time with your kid while going up and down. And to make things even more fun, also build a swing and create a real kid’s park just outside your doors.

3. Outdoor Mud Kitchen

If your kids are interested in what is happening in the kitchen and are looking for cooking gifts to recreate recipes, an outdoor mud kitchen will be a fun addition to your child-friendly backyard.

You can use an old sink, wood, and pallets to build a kitchen island and a sink table for your kids to play with. Give your children old cereal boxes and jars to use for food. Your kids will enjoy playing in their “new” outdoor kitchen and you will be delighted to get rid of your old kitchen materials. An added benefit: all the muddy mess is contained.

4. Climbing Tires

Climbing tires are one of the cheaper DIY backyard ideas for kids and bring endless fun to youngsters. Once you set up and color the tires, your children can use them to climb, pull themselves up, crawl under, or run around them.

5. Playhouse or Fort

As its name suggests, a playhouse can be a place for your kids to play with their robot toys, host tea parties, or just have fun with their friends. You can use PVC pipes and waterproof canvas to create an outdoor fort or build an actual wooden playhouse using pine boards and plywood.

Cool Playground Ideas for a Large Garden

Those of you who are lucky enough to have a huge backyard can pick or choose to incorporate several ideas and build an entertainment park just outside your doors.

1. Zip Line

If you have older kids and some trees on your property, a zip line is a perfect summer project that will keep your kids and their friends entertained all season long. You will need some rock climbing equipment such as a cable and rope, and you can always hire a professional to install everything.

Note: to prevent any mishaps, make sure that you are always there to supervise your children while they are going down the zip line.

2. Treehouse

cool backyard ideas for kidsA treehouse is, without a doubt, every child’s ultimate dream. Not only does it encourage kids to be active and explore, but a treehouse can also serve as a quiet space for doing homework and a playground for all the kids from your block.

As with a zip line, safety is the number one priority, so make sure that the treehouse is properly constructed and stable. And if you think that building one will take too much time and effort, let your kids design the treehouse and hire a professional to build it.

3. Designated Play Yard

The beauty of having a large garden is that you can create a designated play area for kids and use the rest to plant flowers or build a patio. Use rubber tiles to create a playground and add an outdoor playset or a trampoline for your kids to play with and have fun.

4. Splash Pad

Adding a splash pad to your backyard is a great way to keep your kids cool during summer and is a lot cheaper than getting a pool. The Jozo Outdoor Splash Pad provides an easy solution for children ages 12 months to 13 years.

Backyard Ideas for Kids FAQs

How Do I Make My Yard Child-Friendly?

When it comes to creating a child-friendly backyard, your goal should be to create a safe and simple environment that will invite your kids to explore and be outside. A kid-friendly yard should have some open space for exploration. Make sure your designated outdoor space does not have any dangerous objects, such as gardening tools, within arms reach. Prepare the space according to the ages of your children.

A child-friendly garden should also have an area where your kid can dig up dirt or plant flowers, a shaded space for rest, and a play area for added fun and entertainment.

How Can I Make My Backyard More Fun?

There are many ways to make your backyard more fun depending on your child’s age and your budget. You can create a race car track, add water features, make a badminton court, build a rope bridge or a mini-golf course, or create a backyard campsite.

How Do You Make A Small Garden Fun For Kids?

Even if you have the smallest garden ever, there are ways to put that outdoor space to use and make it fun for your kids. An elevated playhouse saves space, but it also makes a small backyard super fun for kids. You can also add tunnels, set up a water table, encourage your kids to draw with chalk, set up builders trays, or build a cozy den.


Whether you have a small, medium, or large garden, you can make it child-friendly and fun thanks to these cool backyard ideas for kids. To encourage your kids to go out and play in your yard, get them involved in your backyard projects and let them share their ideas.

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