Gone are the days of sending the kids outdoors on long summer days to play, only to tell them to check in and be home by dark. Apparently parents can’t even let their kids walk to the park alone in a neighborhood without getting arrested for child endangerment. Our world has come so far in such a short time. Instead of spending the summer playing for hours on end outside with nothing to do but use your imagination, kids are indoors in front of computer screens and video games. Even if your kid isn’t in front of a screen all day (good job), chances are they are indoors a lot more then they should be. Not only is this detrimental to the child but it has become a detriment to our society.
A rise in obesity, childhood diabetes, and learning and behavior disorders, can many times be linked back to a change in our culture and how children move and interact with their world. Summer time is a great opportunity to get kids out of the normal routine of classroom desks, computers and book work into a world of unknown and imagination. For those kids who are not accustomed to finding things to do, it can be hard at first. They will whine, complain, ask you what they should do with themselves, and beg to get back to their screen time. The more you are able to ignore their requests and let them figure it out, the more their imagination will sore. It really is amazing to see what kids come up with on their own when allowed the time and opportunity. They are quite creative.
There may be times when they are really stuck for ideas. Or quite possibly, you might not be that great at letting them figure it out for themselves. It takes letting go of the control (yikes!). There are some great suggestions and ideas for simple things to do outside. Print these out and post them up for your kids to see. That way it gives a little direction, but still allows them to choose and ignites their creative juices. Here are 5 tips for sending the kids outside…
- 50 Outdoor Summer Activities for Kids
- Simple Outdoor Activities
- Activities to Get Kids Out of the House This Summer
- Outdoor Ideas for Older Kids
- 101 Fun Ideas for Teens this Summer
Make sure to have your video camera ready, because whatever creativity comes out of your kids this summer, you will want to document it. It will come in handy next summer when they are asking for ideas and saying they have nothing to do. Boredom can be good…it leads to creativity. Enjoy the imaginative summer outdoors!