How to get kids outdoors
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The topic was so great, however, that I wanted to post up anyway!
The topic of choice was our favourite ways to play outdoors with our kids.Fortunately, ‘getting my child outdoors’ isn’t something I need to give much attention to. Little Miss green is a naturally outdoors girl and I put this down to several things:
- From birth, she’s been outside everyday. As a family, we are the outdoor sort.
- We live in a beautiful part of the country which just PULLS you outside!
- We have no TV, so the outdoors is her entertainment.
- She’s never heard ‘be careful’ so enjoys the freedom to climb trees, paddle in the stream, play with sticks and run around.
- She is home schooled, so has access to the outdoors as much as she likes; rather than being told she can go outside when the bell rings.
- We have a bunny and we all love the excuse to go outside, give her some love and feed her dandelions!
- One of our ways to spend daily quality family time together is to go out for a walk.
So I count myself as blessed as I don’t know what it is like to have to convince my child to go outside. Little Miss Green knows exercising and fresh air is good for her health, but most of all she knows being outside is fun!
In recent studies, just 37 percent of 10 – 12 year old children spent more than half an hour outdoors per day. 8 to 18 years spend nearly 4 hours a day in front of a TV screen and almost 2 additional hours on the computer (outside of school work) and playing video games. Little miss Green probably spends on average, about 3 hours outside everyday.
Here are some suggestions to get your kids outside – there are seven sections; one for each day of the week!
Many of the parents who take part in the carnival of natural parenting have babies or toddlers. Some of my ideas are for older children too.:
The reward of growing your own food is getting something to eat at the end of your hard work!
Saunter out into the veggie patch and pick cherry tomatoes, herbs and salad leaves as fresh as you can get them.
Have a barbecue and make vegetable kebabs or roasted new potatoes.
If you don’t have a garden, you can still enjoy al fresco eating by going foraging or packing up a picnic.
Children are natural nurturers. They love fussing over animals or plants and taking care of them.
Why not plant a bee garden, keep chickens, feed the birds, make a pond, plant a tree, visit a farm park or perhaps you have a dog that needs taking out every day – the perfect excuse for a daily walk!
Get outside and get creative with a project together.
You could make an insect house, a bee hotel, a bird table, a den or a campfire.
Kids are great detectives and have an inbuilt sense of wonder whenever they get outdoors.
Go on a nature walk and watch the seasons change; remember to take a basket to bring home treasures for your nature table! Discover a new playground, paddle in a stream, find a new beach or wood to explore and take part in BBC’s Breathing places for inspiration.
The RSPB ask for help in taking surveys throughout the year too; you might get involved with counting wildflowers, looking for signs of spring or bird watching. Enrol your child in your local Wildlife Trust “Wildlife Watch” group where they can meet like minded friends with a love of the outdoors.
Set up a sandpit, a bowl of water or give your child a small piece of earth that is their’s to make mud pies with.
Give them sidewalk chalk and unleash their inner artist.
Put up a tent or play I Spy.
Being outdoors is a great way to incorporate exercise with fun.
Play hide and seek or tag. Get out the bicycles, scooters and footballs.
Bounce on a trampoline, do some skipping or play hopscotch. Remember the games you enjoyed as a child and teach them to your kids!
Can’t get enough of the Carnival? Keep bang up to date with the “Carnival of natural parenting” facebook page.
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