Ways to get your Child to Spend Time outside

Outdoor activities for kids are bountiful. Finding easy ways to get your child to spend time outdoors can sometimes present a problem. They open the back door, see the whole outdoors staring back at them and want to stay inside. However, there are ways to gently nudge them out the door. Remember: if it’s good for them, it’s good for you and children learn by example.

*Spend quality play time outdoors with your child

If it’s snowing, build a fort with them and have a snowball fight, play bad-mitten, loser does the supper dishes. Set up a safe target and learn archery with them or hang a swing from a tree limb and take turns pushing each other. Play hopscotch, jump rope and rock school or ride bikes with your child and teach them proper safety on the street. You can go for hikes and learn to hunt for arrowheads or unique rocks. Or just jog with your child or take a walk through a park.

*Spend time teaching your child about the great out doors.

Check out books from the library about local wildlife and how to create a backyard habitat. Hang birdhouses and feeders and have your child keep the feeders and birdbaths filled and clean.

Camp out in the backyard with your child as a practice run for the real thing. Show them how to choose a campsite, gather firewood and build a fire safely. Teach them to cook on the open fire. Teach your child an out door sport such as rock climbing, fishing or horseback riding.

*Include your child in outdoor projects and responsibilities

Pay your child an allowance to mow and trim the yard or wash the car or windows. Teach them to trim the shrubs or make walking the dog your child’s daily task.

Plant a garden with them and teach them all you know. Spend time tending the garden together and discussing the various plants. Build a patio or patio furniture with your child’s help, teaching them the proper use and care of both materials and tools.

Build a fishpond with your child and let them take care of it. Enlist their help making personalized stepping-stones with cement and whatever trinkets they choose for embellishment. Marbles, small cars, old jewelry, arrowheads or unique rocks. Allow them to write their name in the cement before it hardens.

*Everything is more fun with company

Allow your child to have friends over for out door fun and plan a cookout for your child and their friends, complete with games.
Set up a tether-ball pole and have a game with them or set up a basketball court away from flowerbeds. Have relay races across the back yard. Install a monkey bar for climbing. If room and funds allow for it, swimming pools offer great exercise for kids. Dig out your old hula-hoop and have a contest for who can keep it going longest.

If your child has something to do out doors, which grabs their attention and excites them, you will have no trouble getting them to spend more time out side. Sometimes all a child needs is an idea to jump-start their own imagination on activities for outdoors.