Unlike their parents’ childhood which was more focused on hanging out with friends outside, modern children are crazy about computer games which keep them indoors. Apart from making their children step outside to play, parents find it even harder to find engaging activities they can do with their kids outside. If playing throw and catch won’t get your children moving, here are 7 great activities that are bound to lure them out in the backyard.
Building a fortress
If there is one thing children like to do, then that’s being creative and build stuff. The popularity of building games for PC stands as a testimony to this but you can propose a more hands-on approach. Go to a DIY center or a toy shop and buy enough supplies to build a backyard castle or a fortress.
Once the little ones see that you are ready to give them tools (under supervision, of course) they’ll just right at the opportunity. The best thing is that despite their enthusiasm and creativity, kids don’t know the first thing about building so you’ll be there to guide them all the way.
Limit screen time
For the kids to have enough time to play outside, you should introduce limits when it comes to daily screen time. If they spend their time doing homework, going to school, and playing games there won’t have many free hours left to have fun with your outside.
The screen time restriction should apply to all devices, from the TV to the tablet, if you’ve bought hem one. Since it’s the most fun to go outside during daylight, try to make the kids watch TV or play video games in the evening. Hopefully, they will realize over time that fun and games are a better way of spending their free time that staring at a TV screen.
Take up gardening with your kid
Starting a garden had probably crossed your mind before but you’ve probably thought that unless you’re a green thumb there is no point in trying to get your kids into gardening. Quite the contrary, you don’t have to have any experience to start a garden with your children.
It would be more interesting for both of you to learn all the gardening tips and tricks together. Not only will the children get an opportunity to connect with nature but if you plant a vegetable garden together, they can reap the fruit of their labor. Eating a pepper they have planted and nurtured together with their parent(s) will teach them a valuable lesson about life.
A helping hand for outdoor repairs
If you own a house, then you’ve probably bought it with children in mind. However, a house takes a lot of maintenance, especially the exterior of the house. When you go outside to clean a louvered roof or repaint the fence, your kids stay indoors inquisitively observing your every step.
Instead of leaving them behind in the house, take them with you the next time you go about sprucing up the house’s exterior. Of course, don’t let them get near power tool or climb the roof but they can still lend you a helping hand by bringing water out taking out the trash. They are going to be thrilled with the opportunity to help grownups do grownup stuff.
Go beyond the backyard
Gardening is an excellent way for the kids to spend time in nature but an even better tactic is to take them past the backyard fence. When the weekend comes, sit in the family car and drive your spouse and children to a picnic out in the wilderness.
The camping location doesn’t have to be anything special, as a lakeside resort near the town will suit just fine. You should do this several times a year and especially in the summer when there is plenty of opportunities to spend time outside throwing a Frisbee or playing baseball. Try to vary the location as much as possible so one weekend you’ll go to the seaside and the next you’ll camp out in the mountains.
Walk to school instead of driving
Driving the children to school is a real hassle for many parents because they see it as a necessity. However, the time spent on the way to and fro school can be used for bonding. If the school is not too far away, you can take the children to school on foot.
During the stroll, you get a chance to talk with your kids and even play games like you did when you went to school. Of course, your day may need rescheduling but it will be all worth it because you get to spend quality time with your kids outside.
It’s OK to get dirty
If you’re a strict parent (which is not necessarily a good thing), then you are probably constantly telling the kids off for getting muddy and dirty. Because of these restrictions, they will start to feel resentment towards playing outside and ultimately stop going out. To combat this, start telling your kids that it’s perfectly fine to get dirty, wet, or messy while playing outside.
Your children will not be small forever so you should try to spend as much quality timer with them as possible. Stepping outside the house is an excellent way to achieve this.