As soon as the weather warms up, it’s time to say no to TV and phone, get the kids outside! If you’re lucky to own a sprawling property big enough for a kid’s playhouse and outdoor game activities, you make some DIY ideas for your kids, such as an outdoor music station, a tent, a DIY mud kitchen, a miniature racetrack with a full course. And here are 25 Backyard Playing Ideas for Kids. They are fun, kid-friendly DIY outdoor games.
There are many upcycled materials including the popular old pallets, empty tin cans, plastic bottles plastics, tires, and more. All of them are inspired by the idea of upcycling materials without spending a ton of money to get your kid games. If you are interested, look around your property for materials you could repurpose.
#1 Outdoor Pikler from Pallets
The Outdoor Pikler from Pallets is an innovative and eco-friendly play structure designed to inspire imaginative and active play for children.
Source: Nicole Margaret
Made from reclaimed pallet wood, this durable and sustainable Pikler offers a natural and rustic charm while providing kids with endless opportunities for exploration and physical development. Perfect for outdoor play, it encourages climbing, crawling, and creative play, all while promoting a connection to nature.
#2 A DIY Mud Kitchen
Transform your backyard into a world of muddy marvels as your children engage in the DIY Mud Kitchen, a charming and budget-friendly project that sparks their creativity and lets them discover the joys of playing in the great outdoors.
With this unique play space, they’ll develop important life skills and create cherished childhood memories amid the splatters and giggles of mud pie masterpieces.
#3 An Outdoor Music Center Using Tin Cans
As the sun shines and the rhythm flows, children will uncover the delights of musical exploration while enhancing their coordination and auditory senses, all in the comfort of their own backyard.
It is so great to watch them drum, tap, and jingle to their heart’s content, creating wonderful melodies with their outdoor music center using tin cans, where imagination knows no bounds.
#4 Outdoor Music Station with Pallet Wood and Household Items
As the sun bathes the outdoor music station in a warm glow, children will be drawn to the irresistible allure of creativity and sound. By blending recycled pallet wood with everyday items from around the house, this project encourages resourcefulness and innovation while offering endless opportunities for musical exploration. Whether it’s the rhythmic clinking of pots and pans, the melodious chiming of a wind chime, or the rhythmic drumming on upcycled containers, kids will find their own unique voices and compositions, all while basking in the fresh air and the wonders of the backyard.
Source: Alicia Easterwood
This music station is not just about making sounds; it’s a gateway to fostering a lifelong love for music, sustainability, and outdoor play. Your children will not only develop their auditory and motor skills but also learn to appreciate the art of repurposing in an environmentally conscious way.
#5 Backyard Racetrack
The Backyard Racetrack using Old Tires offers an unforgettable journey through the world of make-believe racing, where children can dream up their own race scenarios, design the perfect racecars, and engage in friendly competitions. It’s an opportunity for them to learn about sportsmanship, teamwork, and goal-setting while having a blast.
This innovative play area not only keeps children physically active but also provides a fun, dynamic setting for social interaction and imaginative adventures. The best part is that it’s a sustainable and budget-friendly project, showcasing how a little creativity and old materials can transform your backyard into an epic racing arena.
#6 Tin Can Bowling
Tin Can Bowling is not just a game; it’s a chance for kids to exercise their creativity. They can decorate the cans, giving each one its own unique personality, which adds an artistic element to the activity. This DIY project also promotes recycling and sustainability by reusing tin cans that might otherwise end up in the recycling bin.
Furthermore, it’s a versatile game that can be easily tailored to different skill levels and ages. Younger children can enjoy the excitement of knocking down the cans, while older kids can compete to achieve the perfect strike.
#7 Dry Creek bed for Trucks
Do you want to take your kids to a friendly game? Try to make a Dry Creek Bed for Trucks! This is an enthralling backyard venture that unleashes a world of imaginative possibilities for kids. With a touch of ingenuity and easily accessible materials, you can construct a lifelike miniature dry creek bed, tailor-made for toy trucks and construction vehicles. This hands-on experience is not just about play; it’s an educational journey that encourages children to cultivate essential skills.
As your kids navigate their toy trucks through the meandering path of pebbles, sand, and occasional small obstacles, they embark on thrilling adventures, building not only roadways but also their cognitive and motor skills.
#8 Crate Cars
DIY Crate Cars are the perfect blend of learning and play to sneak in some educational elements amid all the fun. With these crate cars, your backyard becomes a racetrack, and your kids are the fearless drivers. They can stage their races, create their own tracks, and let their imaginations run wild. It’s a wonderful opportunity for them to engage in social play, compete with friends or siblings, and enjoy the simple pleasures of childhood.
These creative crate cars offer a chance for your children to learn about recycling and upcycling materials, instilling an early sense of eco-consciousness. Through this DIY project, they’ll discover that fun and sustainability can go hand in hand, all while having a blast in the great outdoors.
#9 Make a River!
“Make a River” is an ideal project for fostering an early love for science and engineering in children as they experiment with the fascinating dynamics of water and the design of their miniature boats.
This captivating DIY backyard river project not only nurtures their natural curiosity but also encourages them to embrace eco-friendly practices by creatively repurposing materials like the 5-gallon bucket and shiny silver paper. As they immerse themselves in the world of “Make a River,” children gain hands-on insights into water’s behavior and flow patterns.
#10 Tire Sand Box
Take your kids away from smartphones and television and try playing to the wonders of the Tire Sand Box. This captivating backyard project not only offers a screen-free alternative but also promotes hands-on, sensory learning as they dig, mold, and shape the sand within the tire.
By creating a Tire Sand Box, you’re instilling an early appreciation for eco-conscious practices in your children. They’ll discover how simple repurposing can transform an old tire into a world of imaginative adventure and eco-friendliness.
#11 Repurpose Wooden Spool
Nurture your child’s imagination and let them embark on soft, natural adventures with the DIY Backyard Car, lovingly crafted from a repurposed wooden spool. This eco-friendly project, which transforms a simple wooden spool into a creative car-shaped play structure, promises to transport your little ones to a world of endless outdoor play.
Source: Silje Bentzen Wikmark
In this gentle and sustainable backyard journey, your children will explore the wonders of imaginative storytelling, developing their fine motor skills and discovering the beauty of the great outdoors.
#12 Climbing Towel
It’s time to encourage your children to experience the gentle thrill of the Climbing Towel, where old tires and branch trees combine to create a natural and soft climbing challenge in your backyard. This eco-conscious DIY project offers a serene and wholesome opportunity for kids to connect with nature and develop their physical abilities.
Source: Atelier Ingrid Azevedo
By softly navigating the branch trees and old tires, children will encounter the natural rhythms and textures of the outdoors, fostering a deep appreciation for the world around them. This gentle adventure not only promotes active play but also encourages sustainable practices, as they discover the art of repurposing in a way that blends seamlessly with the softness of the natural world.
#13 A Miniature Play Treehouse
Embrace the gentle allure of the Miniature Play Treehouse, a sanctuary of wonder nestled softly in your backyard. This natural, kid-sized treehouse offers a serene escape, allowing children to explore, create, and daydream among the branches, all while connecting with the softness of the great outdoors.
The play treehouse isn’t just a structure; it’s a gentle invitation to ignite the imagination and nurture a profound appreciation for the natural world. With a touch of creativity, children can embark on soft, imaginative journeys, where they learn about the beauty of nature and the joy of outdoor play.
#14 Kid-Friendly Backyard
Immerse your backyard in the gentle colors and textures of nature with the Kid-Friendly Backyard adorned by softly painted wooden steps. This eco-conscious and whimsical DIY project introduces a soft and artistic charm to your outdoor space while providing children with a natural and playful stepping pathway for their outdoor adventures.
Witness as your kids joyfully explore the Kid-Friendly Backyard with Colorful Wooden Steps, where their outdoor play experiences are naturally infused with the soft hues of joy, wonder, and the limitless potential of your own backyard.
#15 Log Stepping Stones
The Log Stepping idea with Wooden Slices is a project that invites the soft wonders of nature into your backyard. By incorporating these wooden slices, you create a pathway that weaves naturally through your outdoor space, like a meandering trail in the woods.
Source: Dave Entrican
This soft and rustic DIY endeavor not only enhances the organic beauty of your outdoor area but also provides an opportunity for children to develop their balance, coordination, and sensory awareness while enjoying the soothing embrace of the great outdoors.
#16 Natural Play Space
Discover the pure joy of crafting a Natural Play Space with Wooden Pieces in your backyard. This eco-conscious and imaginative project seamlessly blends the serenity of nature with the softness of children’s play.
By utilizing wooden pieces, you’ll create a tranquil and sustainable play area that encourages creativity, physical exploration, and a deeper connection with the natural world.
#17 DIY Water Wall
By repurposing plastic bottles and arranging them vertically on a wooden slice, you create a serene mini waterfall that evokes wonder and eco-consciousness in a tender and engaging way.
This project softly introduces the beauty of cascading water to children, seamlessly blending the tranquility of nature with the softness of their play. When kids interact with this DIY waterfall, they’ll be gently entranced by the soothing sound and sight of flowing water.
#18 Wilderness Playground
To make a playing area for your kids right at your home, you can try easily the Wilderness Playground project. This is an imaginative backyard project that transports children into the heart of nature within the confines of their own outdoor space.
Incorporating natural elements like logs, stones, and greenery, you can create a captivating play area that encourages imaginative play, fosters a deep connection with the outdoors, and promotes eco-conscious fun. This idea offers kids a chance to explore, balance, and engage their creativity in a setting that feels like a mini wilderness.
#19 Hanging Pallet Swing
Enjoy your backyard with the gentle charm of the DIY Hanging Pallet Swing! This is a project that seamlessly blends the natural world with the softness of your children’s play.
Simply, repurposing a wooden pallet and sturdy ropes, you create a serene swing that elevates outdoor fun to new heights while gently introducing the concept of upcycling and sustainability. There is nothing better than taking a seat on the pallet swing and softly soaring into adventures, building cherished memories, and honing motor skills.
#20 The Drawing Tree
This project promises to bring the soft wonders of nature into your child’s artistic play. You can use a tree as a gallery that provides natural artistic supplies, you create a serene outdoor haven for creative expression that nurtures a profound connection with the natural world.
“The Drawing Tree” is not just an art project; it’s a tender opportunity for children to softly explore the beauty of nature while expressing their artistic visions. As they draw, paint, and hang kid’s favorite pictures, they can create amidst the tranquil surroundings, they’ll develop fine motor skills, engage in gentle imaginative play, and bask in the fresh air and the soothing embrace of the outdoors.
#21 Water Plays
Let’s take your kids to the backyard and immerse in the gentle simplicity of the Pop Bottle Sprinkler! The project seamlessly blends the natural world with the softness of children’s play.
You just repurpose an empty plastic bottle, and you create a serene and eco-friendly water sprinkler for kids, offering them a refreshing and engaging experience. When children interact with the game, they’ll be softly cooled by the water, enjoy the naturalness of outdoor play, and embrace the softness of the great outdoors.
#22 Green Living Tent
Welcome to the Green Living Tent project that will bring gentle harmony and weave the soft wonders of nature into your backyard. No need to use any budget, you also can create a zero dollar for your kids by using climbing beans right in your vegetable garden.
This idea is more than just a gardening project, it is a serene and eco-conscious living space, where children can explore and dream amidst the natural beauty.
#23 Stepping Stone Idea
The DIY Paver Hopscotch is a backyard game that seamlessly integrates the softness of outdoor play with the natural world. By transforming ordinary pavers into a colorful and entertaining hopscotch game, you create a serene and eco-conscious activity that encourages physical play, coordination, and imaginative exploration.
When children softly hop through the squares of the DIY Paver Hopscotch, they’ll embark on a journey of balance, grace, and the soothing laughter that accompanies classic outdoor games.
#24 An Old Boat Turned Charming Sandbox
This concept effortlessly merges the tranquility of coastal living with the enchantment of childhood play. Through the art of repurposing an old boat, you fashion a peaceful and eco-friendly play area that invites children into a world of natural wonder and imagination.
When kids step aboard the boat sandbox, they embark on gentle maritime adventures, delicately unearthing hidden treasures and casting their imaginations adrift on the serene seas of your backyard.
#25 DIY Tic-tac-toe Painted Rocks Craft
The serene craft of DIY Tic-Tac-Toe Painted Rocks promises to bring your kids a project that artfully blends creativity with the gentle backdrop of outdoor play. Just adorning ordinary stones with vibrant paint, you’ll craft a personalized, eco-conscious version of the beloved Tic-Tac-Toe game, nurturing both enjoyment and strategic thinking in your children.
When kids softly interact with these painted rocks, they’ll have the chance to play and explore, refining their decision-making skills and partaking in unhurried outdoor activities. It’s a harmonious amalgamation of artistic expression and intellectual engagement, where each rock becomes a strategic move in the game, adding an extra layer of enjoyment and challenge to your outdoor escapades.