Children nowadays have a tendency to spend too much time indoors in front of the computer or TV. There is just too much to do inside with all the kids programming and video games available. Some parents are not at all concerned about this. It is just accepted as the way kids ARE now. Yet there is so much to learn from exploring nature and kids who spend all day indoors with electronic entertainment are missing out.
Kids used to love to climb trees and roam around their environment. They loved to bicycle around the neighborhood and play games with other kids. When play time involves sitting on a couch all day perhaps playing a role playing video game with people they have never met, that should concern us. Now I am not against video games and TV all the time, as we have both in our house, but I would reconsider both of them if my kids spent more than a few hours a week on either endeavor. Experiencing life from the couch is not what I want for family.
The book Nature’s Playground: Activities, Crafts and Games to Encourage Children to Get Outdoors is a book full of activities and ideas to get the children away from those modern trappings and out into the natural world around them. It has many wonderful and adventurous activities, games and crafts that provide hours of fun during the various seasons. From building a den with branches, how to be a nature detective, treasure hunts, sail wooden boats across a pond, bows and arrows, stargazing, mud activities, making bug boxes, collecting and discovering insects as well as safe activity ideas after dark – all of this and more is contained within this book. This is just one of many books you can get to help in this regard.. I love that so many people are on board with getting our kids outside!!
We live in the city and while we have the “outdoors” it is not exactly “nature”. So I spent the last few days with my three kids just adventuring in nature. Sometimes we need to decompress and get out there and do nothing but that.. no TV, no computer, just quality time together and fresh air. We went out to Amish country to walk, see the sites, and buy some fresh grown goodness from local growers. After a couple days I came home so refreshed I am ready to do it again once more before they start school.
In the picture above my daughter is armed with paper and a crayon so she can write down all the stuff we saw on our daily nature walks.
Give your kids the greatest gift of their childhood, let them play in the earth’s biggest playground – Nature. I know I would not be the person I am without all of the nature experiences I had growing up. The benefits of discovering nature are multi-fold. It strengthens their development and growth, but it also makes them aware of nature and how live in harmony with it.
Some of my fave pictures from Amish country this week: