Is it hard to get your child excited about playing outside? Are they more interested in video games and TV or showing signs of a smartphone addiction? Find ways for them to experience fun outdoor activities in nature. It’s also a great way to foster self-confidence in your child that will carry into adulthood. Here are some fun, safe, and exploratory activities for them to enjoy outdoors.
Camping is a great way to help you and your child unplug from technology and connect with one another and nature. Spending time in the great outdoors provides the opportunity to see all kinds of wildlife and natural features, such as mountains and beaches. It’s also refreshing o limit your use of electronic devices and teach your kids basic skills like pitching a tent, building a fire, and cooking a meal.
If it’s your child’s first time setting up camp, it’s a good idea to do it in your backyard. Inviting friends over and making a night of it is a good way to break them into the experience.
Bear in mind that even in your own backyard, kids could be subject to various dangers. Poisonous plants and biting insects can quickly turn your outings into unpleasant experiences. Keep a first aid kit handy, and teach your kids some basic rules about water safety for nearby pools and fire safety for campfires. You may also want to install a fence around your property to ensure your kids don’t wander off and critters don’t get into your yard. Connect with a local fence company and make sure they’re licensed, insured, and aware of utility lines.
Hiking and Biking
Hiking offers many of the same benefits as camping, and it doesn’t require as much time. If you live near mountains, foothills, or a park, you can go on a hike and be back home for lunch or dinner. It’s also great for getting exercise in a natural setting, and as Bird’s Eye Meeple notes, hiking is an activity you can enjoy throughout the seasons.
Going on a hike is good for you and your child’s cardiovascular health, and navigating the rough terrain of nature trails can be more effective than the standard walking track for improving balance and agility. Hiking trails also offer even more exposure to wildlife than camping. For instance, you are likely to see and hear dozens of bird species while on just a short hike.
Look for biking opportunities as well. Biking also offers cardiovascular benefits and is a terrific activity for families looking to enjoy time together. The Thermal Belt Rail Trail offers your family the opportunity to bike in nature on trails that weave through the heart of Rutherford County.
There are all kinds of advantages to becoming a birder, both for your and your child. To start, it’s an opportunity to learn about your immediate environment: exactly what kinds of birds live there, the kinds of habitats they live in, why your area’s climate is ideal for them, and how different birds have adapted to human presence.
To inspire your child’s power of observation, Audubon suggests making a scavenger hunt by creating a list of target birds for them to spot, and you might even want to add a set of binoculars and a field guide to their gear.
Kids love water whether they are surfing on it, swimming in it, or fishing from the water’s edge. But it’s imperative to engage your child in watersports wisely. Kids need to learn to swim, and having experts guide them through activities like kayaking and paddle boarding ensures they learn appropriate and necessary skills.
If you want your child to experience the joys of nature like you did as a child, get them outdoors today. It’s a great way to get them off the tablet and onto the trail. Camping, hiking, bird watching, and watersports are all fun activities that can teach them lifelong knowledge and skills while exposing them to the beauty of connecting with nature.