Recently Wilston Kids Care has been in the process of implementing Wet Weather Play into the program at the centre. We have been collaborating and consulting with other services in Brisbane regarding their implementation of Wet Weather Play. Angus Gorrie at Camp Hill OSHC has provided great advice and feedback for implementing this type of play at our service in a safe and beneficial way. Our Educational Leaders, Nicola Bergmann and Ryan Fraser, have been working hard to risk assess these activities. This risk assessment is accessible to all families in the Wilston Kids Care office. Rain play is not compulsory; this activity will only be conducted if children have a raincoat or poncho in their bags, and therefore you are able to easily opt out if you wish.
What is Rain Play?
Rain play is the act of allowing children to play freely in the rain in safe and supervised conditions.
What is needed?
In the event of wet weather, we will let children play outside if they have weather gear (minimum requirement being a rain coat) in their possession. Through our consultation process we have found that some gum boots or reef boots and a plastic bag can be a great asset. If the children do not have appropriate shoes, they will be allowed to participate with bare feet in an area carefully checked for hazards. This activity is restricted to the After School Care and Vacation Care sessions, and will be conducted in light rain, not torrential downpours, lightning or cold weather.
What are the benefits of Wet Weather Play?
Implementing Wet Weather Play has many benefits. Children of all ages enjoy and benefit from playing outdoors in all except the most extreme weather. Daily outdoor play is healthy, burns energy and is also an important part of obesity prevention and helps to establish life-long patterns of healthy physical exercise. With rain jackets over their normal clothes, children are warm and protected and able to enjoy uninhibited outdoor play. A wet weather plan allows the children to engage in a variety of play in new and exciting environments and encourages the children to be adventurous and independent.
Rain Play will allow children to explore new senses. There are new smells in the air, the ground feels different beneath their feet, there are puddles to splash in and mud to squelch in. Most of us can conjure up fond memories of playing in the rain. The feeling and the sound of the rain stimulates the senses, and calms the mind.
Children explore nature and the world around them with their senses, and rain play is an important part of understanding and appreciating their environment.
Wet Weather Play will be implemented from next week (09-04-18). If you have any questions regarding Wet Weather Play, please contact the Educational Leaders at firstname.lastname@example.org