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Bringing The Fun Of The Beach Back Home

May 20, 2008
Children love exploring at the beach - the combination of dry powdery sand, wet squidgy sand that can be moulded, and water is intriguing, and allows for endless experimentation, building, modelling and finding out about how things work and feel. Very often children also like building roads, towns, forts, castles and other constructions, and then either use their imagination, or small shells or pebbles as cars or people, and use the sand and water as the scenery for their small world of pretend play.

These same opportunities and benefits can also be brought back to the garden, in the form of water and sand play tables. Very often these are used at play groups, nurseries and infant schools, and there are very good reasons why these tables are so often seen and used at these places. The children love the feel of the sand and water, and the different textures help stimulate their minds, and the ability to make believe, construct, experiment and build is endless, and is the sort of play that is always going to be beneficial, as well as absorbing.

Of course, children also like making a mess, and the sand mixed with the water creates a beautiful and irresistible brown sludge mixture that is either cool and lovely to fiddle with, or good for building. However, at least you will be aware of the fact that the water will eventually drain away or evaporate, and that by tomorrow the sand will probably be dry and powdery all over again - the perfect toy that cleans itself! As for the water - plain tap water is best, and so is easily renewable.

The tables themselves tend to be divided into at least two separate compartments, so the sand and water can be kept separate - at least to begin with, and this provides the opportunity to explore each material separately. In the water zone children can experiment with floating things, seeing what sinks and what floats, pretending to move boats around, or pouring water from container to container, experimenting with flow, volume, weight and other effects. The sand is good for pretending to dig, build and create roads and miniature worlds from, and of course, the combination of the two creates all sorts of extra fun.

Some of these tables come with parasols too, so that children can happily play with these tables in the summer without risking sunburn - particularly since the water would be likely to reflect the sun straight into their faces.

If you just want the sand without the mess of water, then of course a simple sand pit is absolutely fine, and very popular. The only things to watch out for are either bits getting in the sand - tables at least being higher up are less prone to stones and other objects flipping into or being dropped into the sand. The other thing to check is the grade of sand used. Although builders' sand is cheap and easy to buy, it is coarse and rough and liable to irritate and scratch children's sensitive skin. Instead, make sure you buy play sand which is very fine, clean and refined.
About the Author
Victor Epand is an expert consultant about kids toys, dolls, and video games. You will find the best marketplace for kids toys, dolls, and used video games at these sites for kids toys, sand & water tables, play sand, dolls, and used video games.
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