Spring is here and that can only mean one thing, it's time to get outside! We love spending time snuggled up indoors, but getting outside, embracing the sunshine and getting some much needed Vitamin D is important too! Whether it's in your own back garden or a local park, perhaps a woodland or field. Find somewhere fun to explore with your child!
Whether you have a baby, toddler or a young child, there's plenty of fun to be had on your doorstep! I have come up with a few ideas for outdoor fun, for different age children. Some are games I used to play and some I play with my little ones!Starting a love of nature, is key to raising little explorers, and helping them learn to appreciate and care for the environment.
Build A Den
Building a den doesn't have to be for older children. You could always just make a little outside fort with blankets, or perhaps a little tent. You can make it as easy or complicated as you like. Having your own secret space is always exciting! (Did you know, you can even buy ready made Den Building Kits!)
Run A Cafe/Juice Bar!
This is one that is guaranteed fun for everyone! I used to play this all the time!
Let your children open their own cafe, making meals from leaves, grass, flowers (keep an eye on them!) and serving to family & friends. Or as a slightly different idea, instead of creating meals, they could use water too to make some delicious drinks!
Plant Some Seeds
It's a great idea to encourage your little ones to be excited about gardening, and a fantastic skill for them to learn while they are young! Planting seeds is an easy gardening activity for children to be involved with too, and it'll help them develop responsibility and patience too!
Because who doesn't love bubbles? You could either purchase a small bubble machine, a little pot of bubbles..OR You could create some massive bubbles using a DIY big bubble wand!
Draw With Chalk
Chalk is one of the best art materials to use during these warmer months. Your little ones can go wild, drawing some amazing masterpieces all over your patios or fences and you don't need to worry as it'll wash off easily in the rain! Allowing your children to draw outside gives them a real sense of freedom, plus allowing them to develop their creative and fine motor skills too!
Hopscotch is such a classic, well known game but how many of us can actually say we've played it with our children?? It's really quite an educational game too, with maths, creative, physical and cognitive benefits! So grab the chalks and get hopping!
Go On A Bug Hunt
This is one my little sister used to love, and it's so simple. Get your child to draw a checklist of different bugs & mini beasts you normally find in the garden. Let them explore and search for the types of bugs (maybe point them in the right direction) and then they can tick them off once they have spotted them.
Try Growing Your Own Food
As mentioned above, gardening is a great skill for kids to learn and enjoy! It's a fantastic zero waste habit to adopt, plus it's also been proven that children who have grown their own food tend to have a healthier attitude towards eating and nutrition too!
Make Nature Collages
Using contact paper, or paper covered in glue, let children collect and easily stick on various natural items they have found. Leaves, petals, twigs, feathers etc! So simple, but a lot of fun!
Give your child a jar/cup with some water in, and let them put whatever they like in there. They can make their own special perfume using nature.
Have A Backyard Picnic
Put together a delicious picnic platter together, sandwiches, cake, fruit and veggies, fruit juice or even a flask of tea for you! Then grab a comfy blanket, some soft cushions and a few books or magazines! Have a picnic is always a far more exciting way to eat a meal, especially in your own back garden!
Nature Treasure Box
They are used to teach babies how to select, touch and feel. It is a very simple but brilliant idea to inspire little imaginations. Babies and toddlers will love exploring the different items, and deciding for themselves which items to select and play with.
Open a Mud Kitchen
There's nothing better (or messier!) than playing in a mud kitchen! Using different utensils, cups, bowls etc to make different sorts of pies for endless muddy fun!
Paint With Natural Paintbrushes
Let your little ones go exploring outside in search of different natural items, with different textures, to be able to create their own natural paintbrushes! Using an elastic band, a stick and different items you can find to create a simple natural brush. Your little ones will have so much fun painting with new brushes and see what sort of textures and prints they can make!
Play In The Rain
There's no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing! All children love popping on their wellies and jumping in muddy puddles, so let them embrace it. After all, you can't beat rain falling on your face on a Spring day. It's a great way to de-stress and enjoy splashing in the puddles, as well as learning about the weather too.
Make A Nature Bracelet
Make a simple bracelet out of masking tape, with the sticky side facing out. Then go for a nature walk and let them stick whatever they find on their bracelet!
Grow Cress Heads
Growing cress heads is such a fun and easy activity, and another fab way to introduce basic gardening skills to your little ones. It's a great way to teach them about science and growing from seed, not to mention - growing your own food! You can make cress heads in egg shells, using tights or even in yogurt pots!
Water Play is always a winner for any age! Even if you don't have a water table, you could just use the washing up bowl or another large tray/tub!
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