Encourage Kids to Spend More Time Outdoors:  Here’s How

With an abundance of technology in most homes, children often spend their days indoors playing videos games, watching television or playing on their computers, laptops or tablets. Past generations spent most of their summertime outdoors running around, playing, and releasing bottled up energy. The good news is that there are many activities that you can still do to encourage your kids to spend more time outdoors. 

Local Parks 

Regardless of the ages of your children, local parks provide an outlet that lets kids run, play and have fun. There are swings and playground equipment for babies and older children, and lots of grassy areas where you can fly kites, toss footballs or even play a game like volleyball. You can also use the cleared paths to have a wonderful family nature walk where your kids can collect specimens and then view them under a microscope at home. Riding bikes together or showing off your skateboarding skills is another way to bond as a family and let the children burn off energy while getting in fun physical fitness activities. Afterward, you can set up a picnic and enjoy a wholesome meal outdoors, together. 

Off Road Fun 

If you live near an empty piece of real estate that has a dirt road and a grassy area you can take children out for some supervised and safe off-road fun. An Electric kart, dirt bike, dune buggy or ATV provides a world of racing fun. They also teach children how to navigate on uneven terrain and the basics of operating a vehicle.   

The Beach or Lake 

Going to the beach or a local lake gives kids a chance to enjoy the sun and water. They can swim, surf, canoe or even take a boat ride.  There are also fishing piers for fishing and crabbing. There are shells along the beach to collect, as well as sandcastles to create. Just make sure to apply plenty of sunscreen before and throughout the day to prevent burns. 

Camping/ Hiking Trips   

If you want to become one with nature, going on a weekend camping or hiking trip gives children a way to connect with nature. They can learn survival techniques and how to pitch their very own tent to sleep in. And, both provide lots of fun even after the sun sets. During the day you can swim in the lake, fish or go on a nature trail and at night you can roast marshmallows over an open fire and then star gaze. 


Of course, having fun outdoors doesn’t necessarily mean you have to leave the comforts of your home. Your backyard has endless possibilities for outdoor activities. Rent a bouncy house or buy a water slide designed for home use. Or, you can plan a family gathering and set up various activities around the yard like a tennis or volleyball net, a bean bag toss and even a mud pit where kids can safely get dirty. Children also love bubbles and you can use small bottles or go more elaborate and acquire larger pieces to create super-sized bubbles for enhanced fun. You can also grow a garden and paint rocks to add a unique finish. 

Local Events 

If you want to keep your children entertained with outdoor activities over the summer, plan ahead. Check the local paper for events in your area. Most towns have several parades, a series of food and music festivals, and the fair which always has a host of activities like face painting, carnival rides, and farm animals to keep children busy. 

Summertime is a great time to enjoy the sunshine, warm breeze, and countless activities. Get outdoors and make the most of each day and save the electronics for a rainy day.

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