There is an endless supply of fun activities and games that kids can play once they go outside. The best part is that many outdoor activities teach kids about nature, science, and a little patience while having fun. Here are five fun outdoor activities for kids to do when they go outside.
Dig in the Dirt
Kids typically love to dig in the dirt. But this outdoor activity can also be educational with a few extra supplies. Parents can give kids a spoon to use as a shovel and a small pan, such as a cake pan, to add dirt. You can also buy some inexpensive seeds at the dollar store. Then let the kids add the seeds and water their soil, keeping it in a sunny spot.
Right away, kids may begin to see worms and insects crawling out of the pan. In a few days, seeds may start to grow into grass and flowers. Kids can explore the many things in the ground that they usually never get a chance to see.
Explore the Mini Outdoors
There is no need to take kids on a hike someplace grand to get a look at nature. With a simple magnifying glass and a nature journal, kids can get down in the grass and find some fantastic things. Hiding in the blades of grass, they will see insects, worms, and other exciting creatures.
Kids can cook up a plate of ‘smores using just the sun. The easiest way is to paint the outside of an empty, metal coffee can with black paint. Kids can put together their ‘smores and place them inside the can, leaving them in the sun. This activity is a fun way to learn about the sun’s power and cook a sweet treat without fire. Older kids may want to try more advanced solar cooking with a pizza box solar oven.
Parents can join in this outdoor activity and be part of the fun. Hide a piece of treasure somewhere in the yard. Small toys work best, though parents can be creative and use whatever they have on hand. The parents can then draw out a simple map for the kids to follow to the treasure. This activity is an excellent way for kids to understand maps, learn cooperation, and have an afternoon adventure.
When my kids were younger, I would hide these acrylic blue gems around and have them “mine” (look around) to see how many they could find.
Make a Sundial
Kids can make a simple sundial in the backyard using a large stick and a few rocks. With parental help, kids can bury a long stick in the ground, leaving 7 to 12 inches sticking out of the ground. Kids can then mark each hour with a large rock or stone on the ground as the stick’s shadow passes. This can be a great outside activity that will last for many days and have longtime use after it is done.
Getting outside and having fun is an excellent way for kids to enjoy their backyards. Even better, doing outside activities that also teach kids about science and nature makes for a fun and educational day.