What did you do when you were growing up?
Chances are, unlike today’s kids, you probably spent a lot of your time outdoors. From playing games in the garden to going for epic bike rides, you may have enjoyed and benefited from the fresh air and sunshine outside. Fast forward to today when many youngsters enjoy the lure of virtual worlds from their computer and phone screens instead of the wider world outside their front door. And this is a shame, because not only are they missing out on the health benefits of being outdoors, but they are also missing out on some fun experiences too.
With the above in mind then, here are some tips for any of you worrying that your children will spend the entirety of the summer inside.
- Design an area for outdoor play. We aren’t going to go into depth on this point as we have already discussed this here. Have a read, and then give your children what they need to give them an incentive to get out into the garden. So, you might purchase the necessary games equipment to get them into play, from balls and frisbees to large garden games, including these fun examples. You might also get ready for the hot weather with water-based activities, so stock up on your water balloons and water guns, and consider adding a paddling pool and water slide to amp up the fun factor. Then consider the next point for your outdoor area.
- Create a wildlife corner. If you’re not averse to allowing wildlife into your garden, consider setting up an area of your garden to attract birds, minibeasts, pondlife, and more. You might want to add a birdhouse and feeder to attract our winged friends, for example, be that something you buy from your garden centre or something you create with your children as a craft activity. You can set up a patch of garden with leaves, twigs, and stones to attract minibeasts, and with the aid of Swell UK, you might also create a garden pond (with the addition of a pond guard if you have young children). Look for ideas online, and then find the relevant space outdoors. Not only will your children have fun trying to spot the various wildlife that enters your garden, but they will also learn valuable lessons in taking care of the Earth’s natural habitats as well.
- Do something as a family. Many parents ask their children to go outdoors, not only for the benefit of their young ones but to give themselves some peace and quiet. But should you relate to this, know that if you really want to get your kids away from their various screens, you should role model a good example and get outdoors yourself. You might play games with your children in the garden, for example, or set off on a family bike ride together. Have a look at these ideas for activities you might want to take part in, and then enjoy the bonding time you will have together as a family.
- Organise a play date. Get together with other mums and do something as a group. You might want to organise a treasure hunt at the park, for example, or you could set off on a walk together with the promise of a picnic at the end of it. Not only will a playdate give your children the opportunity to see their friends over the summer, but it will also give you a little respite, as not only will get you some adult company, but you will have the support of other mums to help you keep your children entertained as well.
And those were just a few ideas, but what about you? How do you plan to get your children outdoors this summer? Let us know, and share your wisdom for the benefit of any parent looking to get their children away from their screens and into the (hopefully) warm fresh air and sunshine.
Take care, and thanks for reading!