Outdoor play is a cornerstone of your child's experience. You probably still remember the long, beautiful days of summer from your youth. You probably spent them playing with friends on play sets in your backyard, or maybe at the local park. For today's kids, getting outside is much more of a challenge. TV and video games encourage kids and adults alike to stay inside more than ever. These five ideas will help draw your kids outside, letting them experience the health benefits of sunshine, fresh air, and exercise.
Set aside an hour (or two) without electricity. When your kids first get home from school is a great time to encourage them to head outdoors. You can turn it into a game and teach them about resource conservation by creating an electricity free hour, turning off all the lights in the house and darkening computers and other electronics. Be consistent, and your kids will soon get in the habit of play. Don't hesitate to join them outside for an hour or two of family time!
Make outdoor activity a family event on weekends. Your kids learn a lot of their behavioral habits by watching you. Teach them to value outdoor time by planning events like walks through parks and outdoor swing set time on the weekends.
Invest in an outdoor swing set. A swing set provides a structured environment for kids to have fun, which means that they’re much more likely to go outside if they know it's waiting for them. Woodplay offers play sets that are safe and fun for children of all ages.
Encourage play dates. What's better than having your child playing outside alone? Inviting his or her closest friends over to have fun together. This is a great strategy to encourage outdoor time.
Get involved with sports. A kid who is used to playing sports will want to be outside practicing. Over time, this will get your child accustomed to the idea of spending time outdoors, which in turn will lead to more outside play.