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Our Classroom Waterslide

The Big Question

Three weeks ago, a child asked if I could add a waterslide to our outdoor classroom. My response was, “If you want a waterslide, you will need to build it. You can use whatever materials you find at TerraTime to make it happen.”

Using the Jet Sled on the waterslide.

The Process

It has been a joy to watch this waterslide unfold. It is 100% child-inspired and created! Adults have only observed and made risk assessments while children problem-solved. They have worked together to check for safety and stability and make the needed adjustments… all by themselves.

The Benefits

This waterslide is not just a fun activity, it is an opportunity to build skills these children will need to face future challenges. Things like: resilience, conflict resolution, problem-solving, planning, and teamwork, along with numerous motor and executive function skills.

The Conclusion

Children can do amazing things when adults step out of the way and give them time to experiment. Is it perfect? No. Is it the way I would have built it? No. Is it safe? Yes. Is it worth the risk? 100% YES!

The pride and joy on their faces is priceless.

“This is the best day ever!” Seven-year-old at TerraTime

Looking for ideas to encourage creativity and child-driven ingenuity in your outdoor classroom? Check out our DIY page to get started.

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