Do you remember your childhood playhouse or den? Whether you rearranged the sofa cushions, made teepees from bamboo canes and an old bedsheet, or enjoyed the wonders of a proper outside playhouse, you’ll remember the joy of make-believe games. But do you know just how important it is for kids to enjoy free-range imaginative play?
Make believe really matters, say researchers at the University of Cambridge: “High-quality pretend play has repeatedly been shown to be very closely associated with the development of cognitive, social and academic abilities.”
Children need playhouses because acting and role play helps them learn to problem-solve and become more adept at handling real life scenarios. In fact, say the experts at Cambridge University, there’s a “clear link between the complexity of socio-dramatic play and improvement in social responsibility.”
Here are six different wooden playhouses to encourage your kids to get outdoors and imaginative...
This Swiss chalet-style playhouse is a real winner with children from three years and up. Made with quality 12mm tongue and groove cladding, it features a flower motif on the door and a generous front overhang which offers excellent protection from the elements.
The cute cottage-style windows are glazed with shatter-proof styrene and the roof is covered with mineral felt to keep the weather out. Excellent value for money, children love this simple but charming design. And, because it comes unpainted, they’ll enjoy helping to choose the colours and design the decor.
How about a playhouse with double “garage” doors, plenty of windows for natural light and a mezzanine level with safety rail to prevent falls? This garage playhouse offers endless hours of fun and could easily double as a fire station, factory, or even the famous ‘bat cave’ – it’s whatever your kids want it to be.
A generous roof overhang at the front offers good protection in rainy weather and you get the same rugged 12mm shiplap construction as all our playhouses. Add a felted roof, shatterproof windows, and a 10 year rot guarantee and it’s easy to see why our playhouses are so popular.
This Dutch Barn playhouse oozes rustic charm and offers the perfect home for budding young farmers. With plenty of windows it’s also light and bright and, thanks to the high country barn-style roof, it has plenty of head-room so kids won’t grow out of the space quite as fast.
Like all our playhouses this 6ft x 6ft model features 10mm gaps around the door to keep young fingers safe. It also includes shatterproof styrene glazed windows, and complies with TUV Safety Testing BS EN71 European Toy Standard to give you peace of mind.
Is it a fort or a castle, a home on stilts, or maybe a beach lifeguard tower? The Pixie playhouse offers endless opportunities for imaginative fun and games. Children will love climbing the ladder, defending the balcony, or maybe just enjoy relaxing with a cup of tea and fine company in their own garden room.
Built from sturdy timber, like all the playhouses in the Waltons range, this example features planed and rounded timbers, shiplap cladding and a hard wearing solid OSB board roof and floor. All our playhouses comply with European Safety Standards and come with a 10 year anti-rot guarantee.
Bring a little bit of Georgian-style charm to your children’s play with the stunning and spacious Bramble playhouse. Featuring styrene-glazed windows for lots of natural light, kids will enjoy growing their own herbs or flowers in the window boxes. This playhouse measures a generous 8ft x 6ft and features a loft with steps and safety rail – plenty of accommodation for a large family of dolls, bears and small children!
All Waltons playhouses are supplied unpainted to give you the opportunity to decorate it the way you want. Dip treated with wood preservative, they’re guaranteed against rot for ten years provided you paint with wood treatment each year.
What better way to encourage kids to indulge in a full range of fun, imaginative and active play than with our Pirate tower playhouse including a balcony, slide and swing set. Young buccaneers will love the exceptional opportunities for swashbuckling play on offer here.
Constructed from sturdy timber, tough shiplap tongue and groove cladding, and with a solid OSB board roof and floor, this playhouse is built to last. With the correct annual maintenance, it will bring your kids endless pleasure for years to come.
Impressed by this selection of wooden children’s playhouses? Check out our full range – with everything from a traditional style wendy house to a contemporary corner playhouse, we’ve got just the thing to set your children’s imaginations free.
Lead image: Waltons Pirate Tower Playhouse with Slide