We have recently discovered these glorious canopies as roofing ideas for outdoor spaces in childcare centres or primary schools.
Rather than having standard shade sails or veranda roofing, your students can be bathed in colourful shadow that could spark imagination and laughter. A stained cover could also encapsulate a theme your learning area or play space is based on (water, space, plants, animals – endless possibilities)! Your design will continue to excite children as it disappears and reappears with the sun and moves position over the day.
As always there can be something to learn in tandem with fun and play! Children can learn about how and why shadows move position during the day by using chalk to trace the projected shapes in the morning and then comparing them in the afternoon. A popular activity to consolidate the relationship of the sun and colourful shadows is for children to make their own designs using cellophane.
Infinite Playgrounds in the UK have created some excellent nature themed designs for canopies in schools and public spaces. While there isn’t an equivalent company in Australia (yet), that doesn’t mean you can’t have some colourful shade in your centre! A clear canopy or roof structure can be painted from below, have other coloured panels overlaid, or be decorated with cellophane (this option means your design could change as often as you would like)!