Sandpits are an essential item in many playgrounds and what I would call the number one item in an active playground.
Sandpits have many shapes and sizes and are best built to cater for the number and needs of the age group intended for the sandpit.
Most children using a sand pit will want to build, so it make sense to have a low access designated building area attached or close to the main sandpit.
We have found that it is best to have one side of a sandpit preferably on a fence or barrier to designate as a building platform, usually about 1m wide and the length of the sandpit (approximately 3m). Building areas work well with a rubbered surface since children are on there hands and knees a lot during sand play even though they will adapt to the surface you provide.
I believe sandpits work the best for a number of reasons, when there is only one or two access points.
The assessable edge of a sandpit works well if it is flush to the ground for easy access.
A utility box is a good item to store sandpit toys and the sand pit cover when not in use. It's great to keep things neat and tidy, also a good OH&S practice. The lid of the utility box is a good table for children to build on.
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