There are many great New Year’s resolutions, but a priority is kids need time outdoors every day. Try for at least 10 or 15 minutes, depending on weather. While this doesn’t sound like very much, it’s more than the average! Research has discovered kids these days only spend 4 to 7 minutes a day outside. Compare that to about 4 hours of watching tv or other screens. It’s almost unimaginable that we would need to make a new year’s resolution for kids to play outside. What a change in just one generation.
To inspire some outside fun with your child, here are 10 suggestions:
1. The Walk: Going for a walk is pretty obvious, but it’s surprising how different it can be from one day to the next. Of course, getting young kids dressed for the weather can take more time than the walk, but it helps if mitts, boots, mud pants, and other items are all together in a basket by the door.
2. Get a Kick Outside: Kicking a ball can happen on grass or snow. Maybe tuck an extra pair of socks in a pocket. Sometimes when kids kick the ball, they also kick off their boot.
3. Hunt for Treasure: In some areas, the ground could be covered with snow, but there will still be treasures. Check around trees and bushes for sticks, pine cones, and small stones.
4. Follow the Leader: This is a fun game for all ages. When kids lead the line instead of adults, they like to splash in puddles and slide on the ice. Be prepared.
5. I Spy: Look around and take turns playing I Spy. Even if there’s no snow, clouds are also white.
6. Colored Snow: Make a rainbow in the snow with some squirt bottles and colored water. This might need a few pairs of mittens as well as several bottles of different colors.
7. Playgrounds: Swings and slides can be fun even in the winter. You might need to take along an old towel or rag to wipe off the slide. If the area at the end of the slide is quite icy, you may be able to break the ice or scrape some dirt over it so kids don’t keep sliding when the get to the end of the slide. Are there ropes to climb too?
8. Hopscotch: While this is harder to do in boots, as long as the ground isn’t too wet, kids can play hopscotch. Just hopping around is fun too.
9. Tag: For kids that are a little older, they can choose a tag game like Frozen Tag or Statues. Running around and chasing each other is always fun.
10. Shovel the Snow or Dig in the Dirt: A shovel is a fun toy for outside play. For kids that is. Kids need time outdoors and so do grownups but adults don’t think of shoveling snow as fun.
Kids will have their own ideas of ways to play outside. Could Kids Need Time OUTDOORS Every Day be one of your family’s resolutions and goals?