With the option of tech to entertain us, it can be hard to get little ones to play outside, but it’s definitely worth the push! Playing in the fresh air and exploring nature is a fantastic way for little ones to learn and develop a huge range of skills.
Playing outside has lots of health benefits including improved eyesight and reducing nearsightedness. It’s also a great way to develop social skills and language through interactive play with other children.
Kids love muddy play, and you can love it a little more knowing that it can boost your little one’s immune system – so don’t be scared to let them get messy! Playing in the mud is a great, squishy, sensory experience and it helps to build connections in the brain’s pathways. Who knew mud had so much to offer?!
Get creative, make mud sculptures and pies or try painting with mud. Just grab some brushes and paint on paper or even the garden fence – next time it rains it will be washed away!
If you have an old play kitchen or some old pots and pans, your little ones can cook up all sorts of muddy dishes from things around the garden. This is a great way to encourage imaginative and creative play.
Young children are always looking for something new to explore and whilst you don’t want them running off to explore in the supermarket without you, taking them to a forest or field is a great way to let them enjoy different environments. Look at different plants, trees and wildlife, collect interesting finds like pine cones, acorns and leaves in a bucket and take them home for a craft project!
Print out a bug finding list or create your own and head out for a day of adventure. Take a bug finding box and magnifying glass with you so you can take a closer look at the creepy crawlies together. Talk about what species they are, what they feed on and where they live.
Make the most of this time and teach your little ones some basic orienteering skills, they’ll love the excitement! Teach them how to follow a trail and how to use a compass while you walk through the forest.
Getting out with your little ones is not only great for their health and skill development but it also nurtures a love for the environment and nature that will stay with them forever.