A homemade water wall is a fantastic addition to a backyard play space! With a recyclables, you can make a water wall for toddlers and preschoolers to play with at home or preschool. It makes a great STEM activity, teaching kids about gravity, angles and water flow, and it’s a great water activity to keep kids cool on a hot day.
Our water wall is one of my favourite ways to keep the toddlers and preschoolers entertained in the backyard in summer time. It keeps them entertained for hours, scooping and pouring water over and over again, watching the water travel through the various pathways I’ve configured for them. They find it fun and fascinating and it’s a wonderful way to keep cool.
What is a water wall?
A water wall is a configuration of containers, tubes and funnels, which children can pour water and observe the way it drips and flows through the containers below until it empties out into a container on the ground.
Of all the backyard water play activities we’ve done over the years, our water wall remains one of our very favourites!
I first heard about water walls over at Let the Children Play, and I was so inspired by the creative contraptions there that I decided to make one for my home daycare. It’s been an absolute hit with the toddlers and preschoolers here in my daycare, and it’s provided countless hours of scooping and pouring fun.
Today I’m showing you how easy it is to make one for your own backyard!
Don’t think for a minute that making a water wall is complicated. It might look like it is, but it was a really easy DIY project that came together quite quickly after I figured out what I would use for my actual “wall”.
I used two pieces of an old bench which worked out really well as there are two sides for the kids to play at. Mine also folds up and tucks away at the end of the day, which is a bonus. You could also attach your water wall to a board, a wooden fence, a chain link fence, a baby gate, deck rails, or a piece of lattice.
I went through the recycling bin and rummaged through our cupboards to find various bottles and containers to use. I also had an old piece of pool-hose which worked really well.
Putting it all together:
I attached the containers to the wood with a staple gun, by lining things up and pouring water through to make sure the placement was right before I stapled.
If you’re using lattice or chain link fence for your wall, you can attach your containers by punching holes in them, and fastening them with zip-ties, heavy duty twist ties or florist’s wire.
Reycycle that water!
To keep water consumption down, I place a couple of plastic bins at the bottom of the water wall so the water can be re-used as they play. The kids LOVED it. The first day that I introduced the water wall, the hooligans played at it for over an hour. It was a huge hit!
Benefits of a Water Wall:
- develops motor skills and strength
- develops hand-eye co-ordination
- language development
- learning about gravity
- keeps kids cool and entertained
- social development when playing in a group
- You can make a sand wall too!
Our water wall was so popular, I used a similar process to make a sand wall for our sandbox!
I had a piece of scrap lattice which I fastened to the sandbox/playhouse with screws, and I attached the containers by poking holes in them, and securing them to the lattice with long twist ties.
Both the water wall and the sand wall were easy to make and they provide hours of entertainment and fun!
More ways to keep the kids entertained this summer:
Here are 100 fun summer activities that kids can do at home. Print the checklist, and stick it on your fridge, and they’ll never be bored again!
Follow the Hooligans on Facebook
Jackie is a mom, wife, home daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind Happy Hooligans. She specializes in kids’ crafts and activities, easy recipes, and parenting. She began blogging in 2011, and today, Happy Hooligans inspires more than 2 million parents, caregivers and Early Years Professionals all over the globe.
this is an awesome idea i love it and i cant wait to try this
Great sensory activity, great recycling 🙂
I really love this idea! I can’t wait to give it a try!
this looks really great….i have to try this…..
Amy A @ CCS
We have a sand and water wall too… We combine both into one :). http://www.childcentralstation.com/2011/05/sand-and-water-wall.html
Love your combined wall, Amy! Shared on my facebook page. 🙂
Love this! I think I will be a great teacher after reading all these posts from you and other great ladies that share their great ideas! Thanks!
Aw, on behalf of me and all of the other great ladies, Thank You! I’m glad you’re armed with lots of fresh ideas! Have fun!!
I have been wanting to make something like this for inside and was not sure how to pull it off! Thanks for the ideas! I plan to find different balls to use with it.
awesome idea :)…i have to try this
Katie @ Happily Ever Mom
Such a great idea – I’ve been wanting to do something like this for my kids. I love that you used so many different types of bottles from around the house. Thanks for the inspiration, Jackie!
I am a grandma and greatgrandma. I love these ideas. Just goes to prove we don’t need expensive toys to keep kids occupied or addicted. Thank you for spreading the word. I came to this site looking for giant bubble receipe for a graduation party. I had it years ago and lost it. I can’t wait to see the delight on young and old faces. I remember years ago having daycare in my home and using corn in a bucket for cold weather play. God bless you all
Hi! My name is Marion from teachthychild.com. I am in the process of writing an ebook on activities to do with preschool and early elementary age children. I would like to include your blog as a reference so the readers can get more ideas. Please let me know if I can add your blog to the list of recommended blogs in my ebook. Thank you for your time.
You are more than welcome to share a link to my site in your ebook, Marion. Thank you so much for asking, and for including me!
The water wall is just such fun and so music learning going on! However, when I saw the lovely extension idea of a sand walk attached to the sand box…I was amazed! Fabulous idea!
Sorry I didn’t proofread this post before entering it…SHOULD READ There is so MUCH (not music) LEARNING going on…and that should be sand WALL (not Walk) although a sand walk may be a new idea to explore! I think the computer changes words in my post sometimes!
Thanks for including us, Dayna! Pinned. 🙂