Help your kids spend less time connected to technology and more time outdoors with these kids outdoor activities. This will inarguably positively impact their lives in so many ways. A 2014 study found that reducing screen time for children resulted in more sleep, better grades, lower BMIs, and less aggressive behavior in their lives. The American Academy of Pediatrics reports children today spend an average of seven hours per day on electronic devices. Seven hours per day? That’s almost a full school day! I don’t know about you, but that sounds like way too much time for my kids to be online.
Don’t get me wrong, sometimes screen time can be used for learning or can be used to just give mom a break (haha guilty), so I’m not against it! But the question arises what do you spend that time outdoors doing? These kids outdoor activities! More holistic motherhood tips here on my comprehensive guide
Our Favorite Kids Outdoor Activities
- Games. Fill up some water balloons, pull out the shaving cream or silly string, and maybe even add in some washable temporary paint and have a colorful party in the driveway! Hose off afterwards. Use sidewalk chalk to create hopscotch or a racetrack. Take old boxes and household items and build an obstacle course. Anything can be a game – even something as simple as blowing bubbles.
- Get moving. Go on a long walk or travel to an interesting location for a hike. Ask the kids to set a mission on your adventure – maybe collect different species of bugs or plants native to your area. Another one of our favorite kids outdoor activities to help kids get moving without feeling like they’re exercising is playing sports. Get out those balls and bats and start playing. If they’re too little to play the actual sport, just make up a game or an obstacle course for them!
- Arts & Crafts. Anything you would do inside, you can move outdoors! Look for interesting rocks or shells if you live near the beach. This is one of our favorite kids outdoor activities. Then we paint or cover them in glitter. Take your cardboard obstacle course and decorate it to add another layer of fun to the day.
Warm Weather Activities
- Water Day. Slip and slides are a classic summertime activity and can be easily set up. Some of them even connect directly to your garden hose! Washing the car is a great way to have fun while getting chores done. If you’re lucky enough to have a pool in your backyard, take advantage of that sweet delight on a hot afternoon.
- Paint with water. Use a bucket filled with water and a paintbrush to paint anything and everything. It’s the most fun for them when they can actually see the color changing, so paint things like the sidewalk or the driveway, the porch, an old chalk drawing etc.
How Do We Make Playing Outside Special?
My kids absolutely love this Doodle Mat that my daughter got for her birthday. It has a rainbow background that’s activated by water, so it’s virtually mess free! The pack comes with stamps, paint brushes & water pens which is so fun for kids of all ages. We like to get creative with the water play by incorporating a squirt bottle on different settings to make a paint splatter effect. Trace your hands or get your feet wet to make footprints. The possibilities for creative play are endless with the Doodle Mat.
Encourage your little ones to take charge in the design and preparation of the games as well as the playtime! There are so many kids outdoor activities that don’t even require you to purchase anything. Just get creative with what you’ve got.
Ready to add another layer of fun to your kids outdoor activities? Invite over the neighborhood friends and make it social. Including others also provides a variety of activities and toys so the kids don’t get bored with their usual selection of activities.
Research shows that “Children who started watching television at 12 months of age and watched television 2 hours/day were approximately six times more likely to have language delays.” That’s exactly why I started working on this list of kids outdoor activities to keep your kids entertained without the screen. Good luck mama!