Just because you have young children doesn’t mean you should be stuck at home watching kids’ shows on TV. Being active with your kids brings the whole family closer together. Those are the memories your kids will cherish, and it helps them know that they are a priority in your busy life. So here are a few suggestions of outdoor activities for the whole family.
- Backyard GamesOften we think that activities with our kids require a small fortune, but that doesn’t have to be the case. There are lots of games and activities that we can do in our backyard or at a nearby park. For example, catch, kickball, shooting hoops, and water fights require very little money, but it gets you and your kids out of the house, spending time together.
- PicnicsGather up a picnic lunch or pick up some sandwiches on your way to your favorite spot. Whether you live in the mountains or by the beach, there’s plenty of places for your whole family to enjoy the outdoors.
- Nature WalkGive each of your kids a little bag and have them collect interesting items they see on a nature walk. Leaves, rocks, seed pods. Even if you don’t live in a wooded area, your local neighborhood has plenty of nature. This gives you a chance to spend time with your kids while teaching them about the world around them. This can also be the material for a fun art project when they get home.
- Wash the CarSomething as simple as washing to car can turn into a fun outdoor activity. Let everyone have their own sponge. Your kids will feel a part of the action, while you get one of your chores checked off the list. You may want to be in charge of the hose, though.
- Star GazingCheck out a book from your local library about the starts. Read it together, and then take an evening to put what you’ve learned into practice. Bring some hot chocolate or roast some marshmallows while you’re at it.
- Berry or Apple PickingA lot of local farmers let you pick your own berries or apples. This is a great opportunity to teach your kids about seeds and how they grow. It also leads to great indoor activities like making pies or preserves.
- Snow PlayIf you live in a place that gets snow in the winter, take the whole family out to enjoy the cold weather. Sledding is a great family activity that gets everyone outside even when the temperature drops, or if you’re more adventurous take your kids skiing and snow-shoeing. With younger kids, building a snowman with all the accessories is a great activity that involves lots of teamwork and fun.
- HikingFind a hike that is appropriate for your kids’ skill and energy level. Even a paved path through the woods or a walk along the beach can be a lot of fun for everyone.
About the author: Diane Johnson graduated from the University of Utah and enjoys writing, particularly about travel and adult education.Image: Michelle Meiklejohn / FreeDigitalPhotos.net