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Leave plastic animals in a bin outside (near the garden, next to the sandbox, next to a patch of trees, etc) -- when children go outside to play, they can use them and let their imaginations run wild! My recommendation: the children should only play with these toys outside -- that way, they'll look forward to playing outside -- make sure they run around too ;)

Lovely resources outdoors (",) I like the simple bucket balance using found materials. The buckets would be great in a mud pit...

DIY Equipment for Outdoor Play - Balance Scales

The dig pit - image shared by Early Years Learning. A dedicated area for some serious work to take place!

EYFS outdoor provision - music area - stainless steel mixing bowls make a bell like noise - old xylophone dismantled and strung into a chain using cable ties and stretched taught using 2 hooks - old wind chimes suspended on string and hung in a box - wooden xylophone was once a bunkbed frame - cooling rack cable tied to the fence - silicone rubber spoons for beaters (not too noisy!) - and plastic ukulele because they all want to play mine!

Kidsunlimited Barrow have created a builder's yard to enhance the preschool children's interest in large construction and to promote role play outdoors.