Encouraging your children to play outdoors can be tricky – but not at all impossible.
Modern children of all ages tend to spend too much of their time staring at various screens. Video games, computers, tablets and smartphones are surely not your kid’s best friends, and nothing can be better for the development of social-emotional, cognitive and language skills than playing out of doors.
Lea Schneider, a professional organizer and freelance writer, has given some useful tips on getting your child in the backyard.
Some things never change: best toys of the 20th century can also be played with in the 21st. Always have an abundant supply of sidewalk chalk, bubbles, jump ropes, balls and Frisbees: all these activities involve a lot of moving and tons of fun.
There is a whole world outside: help you kids understand how huge it really is. First, birdbaths and birdfeeders are great to expand your child’s knowledge about birds. Second, if you have flowers in your garden, ask your kid to explore them using a magnifier: there is no better tool to learn more about plants and insects. Third, it is a great idea to grow fruits and vegetables and ask kids to document their developments: it can be an awesome outdoors scientific project.
It is not very difficult to construct a cardboard playhouse. Let it be your child’s special place for reading, playing, resting and hiding their treasures.
Make an obstacle course: such materials for the obstacles as cardboard, ropes and cones are inexpensive and can be used in countless ways.
Construct or install a sandbox or create a special construction zone where your kids will be able to happily play in the dirt. Playing with finger paints is all about getting messy while totally enjoying yourself.
Last but not least: join your kids in their activities and provide an example of having enormous fun out of the TV screen. Remember: it is you who your children copy most.