If you’re looking for a fun outdoor activity for kids of all ages, consider building a sandbox. Whether you’re a parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle, or neighbor, you can turn your backyard into a playground with a simple sandbox build. With just a few materials and some muscle, you can create the perfect spot to cool off on hot summer days and build castles. Let’s take a look at how easy it is to construct your own backyard sandbox.
1. Identifying the Space for your Sandbox
Starting off a backyard sandbox project might seem daunting if you’ve never built one before, but with the aid of a few simple tools and planning, you can create a play area that brings the whole family together without needing a full-on construction crew. The first step, no matter the size of your project, is to identify the space.
Sandbox location matters. It’s best to locate it in an area where the kids will have some shade and will be visible to parents or caregivers when playing. Try and position it at least a few feet away from walls, fences or tree trunks and away from outdoor furniture that might block it from view. Also, consider the nearby plants and grass, as you don’t want the sand to get mixed in.
- Get Help: If you need some help identifying an area for the sandbox, ask a neighbor or friend to walk the area with you.
- Size Matters: Determine the size of your sandbox based on the size of the area, the space you have and the amount of sand you plan to get.
- Check It Off: When you have a final location chosen, mark off the area with string or paint. Make sure it is safely away from anything that could harm the children.
Once the area is marked off, it’s time to start shopping for a sandbox and the tools needed to build it. Don’t worry, sandboxes come in a variety of shapes and sizes that will fit the area planned so you can start building a safe, fun sandpit. Now the fun part begins.
2. Gathering Materials for your Sandbox
3. Layering the Sandbox
Now that you have completed the preparatory work, it’s time to get out the sand and start building your sandbox. Take a look at the measurements you have taken to determine the size and shape of the sandbox and add enough sand to fill it up. Make sure that the sand is evenly and firmly packed and level. Then, start layering the sand in the box. See below our detailed steps.
- Layer 1: Place the first layer of sand about three inches high.
- Layer 2: Add the second two-inch layer of sand.
- Layer 3: Place a thin layer of play sand for the top.
Now your sandbox is ready for your kids to play. These layers of sand will provide the firm foundation needed for hours and hours of safe, fun playtime outdoors. To further secure the box, lay down a sheet of landscape fabric around the sandpit.
If you want to make your sandbox more interesting and imaginative, collect all the types of tools and supplies you need such as shovels, rakes, pails, and other materials that your kids can use for building pathways. You can even make it more exciting by including other items such as boats, squirting devices, and other outdoor toys. Now your sandbox is ready for hours of fun!
4. Covering the Sandbox for Protection and Safety
Sandboxes need to be protected and covered to keep them from becoming overfilled with the elements and ruining the fun. Here are 4 easy steps for covering your sandbox for protection and safety:
- Gather the supplies: cover materials, sand, gravel, and screws.
- Lay the covering material on the ground and put the sand on top of it.
- Spread the sand evenly and use a rake to make it level.
- Add the gravel around the edge for additional protection and stability.
Secure the Cover
- Cut and fit the cover material to the sandbox frame.
- Secure the cover with screws, straps, or cord.
- Check the cover at least once or twice a week to make sure it’s still secure.
Now your sandbox is covered and safe for your littles ones to enjoy outdoor play without the worry of the elements. And the best part is that you built it yourself.
5. Fun and Creative Additions for your Sandbox
- A Cover for Protection – You can ensure that your sandbox is well-protected by adding a cover over it when not in use. Make it fun and creative by using colorful tarpaulins and a bungee cord to keep it in place. This keeps the sandbox free from bird droppings, leaves and other critters.
- Create an Entryway – Think of building a little bridge over your sandbox to act as an entrance or even an enclosure. This makes sure that children don’t tumble in, and can add a cool element to the design of your sandbox.
- Include Educational Elements – Make playtime more learning-focused by burying colorful alphabet and number blocks in the sand. This encourages the budding minds of little ones to explore.
- Decorative Plants – Place a small pot of flowers or any other decorative plant at one side of the sandbox. This adds a hint of greenery to your backyard and completes the look of the sandbox.
- Cushion the Base – Place a thin cushioning layer under the sand to provide extra comfort for children when playing. You can use foam mats designed for playgrounds or outdoor floorings.
Whether you’re looking for an activity to keep the kids occupied or just want to add a bit of fun to your backyard, building a simple sandbox is an easy and rewarding project. By coming up with creative ideas, you can increase the amusement that can be derived from the sandbox, making it far more enjoyable. Try these fun and creative additions for a fun-filled playtime every time. Building a sandbox is a simple, fun, and inexpensive way to bring a little bit of beach fun to your backyard. Spread a tarp or an old sheet to keep the sand off the grass, add a few toys, and some shade, and you’ve got the perfect spot for your kids and grandkids to play for hours. It’s an activity everyone in the family can enjoy— from the oldest to the littlest one— and most importantly, it’s a great opportunity to create some fun outdoor memories!