Most parents keep their toddlers at home until they’re old enough to go to school. They think that by doing so, they can keep their little ones safe and sound. Well, that is true.
However, toddlers miss out on many learning opportunities by staying home all the time. They also miss many chances to acquire and improve specific life skills by always being indoors. Don’t let any more opportunities slip by.
Try these relatively safe outdoor activities for your toddlers:
Bubble-making and bubble-blowing
Courtesy of Nubabi
Bubbles are always a hit for toddlers. Making them and blowing them are two outdoor activities that will surely give your toddler plenty of sensory stimulation and physical exercise.
Start your fun with some outdoor chemistry activity by asking for your little one’s help making the bubble solution. Bring everyone to the backyard and let your toddler mix all the ingredients, but keep a close eye on him while he does. It would be a great idea to let him wear some goggles just to prevent soap from accidentally getting into his eyes.
Once the solution is done, hand out bubble wands to everyone and then fill the sky with colorful bubbles. If your backyard is not enclosed by a fence, stay close to your toddler because he will chase after those bubbles. Let him run around in your backyard and work those leg muscles till he’s satisfied.
Courtesy of Parenting
Another relatively safe outdoor activity you can do with your toddler is gardening. It is loaded with many opportunities for sensory experience, science lessons, patience lessons, and fine and gross motor exercises, and it will also teach your toddler a love for nature.
Start your child’s gardening adventure with a pot of his own. Let him plant a seed in his tiny plot and allow him to take care of it every day until it grows. Allow him to get his hands dirty. Remind him to water his plant regularly. By giving him this simple responsibility, he learns to adopt a routine and care for something other than himself.
Courtesy of Go Places With Kids
Make walking a little bit more fun and enjoyable by doing it on the beach. This simple outdoor activity is made special by all the sensory stimuli your toddler will most likely encounter – the sand between his toes, the scent of incoming sea breeze, the moist air, colorful shells washing up on the beach, and much more. Add a few more unforgettable experiences by letting him get his feet wet or by trying to catch a ghost crab, or perhaps by building a few sand castles or forts.
The beach offers plenty of unique opportunities for sensory activities and physical exercise, so it is always an excellent outdoor option for your toddlers. Just be sure to watch him closely at all times so he doesn’t get into trouble.
Trip to the park
Courtesy of Discover Atlanta
If the beach is still too risky for you, then maybe some grassy open space might be a more appealing and safer outdoor choice for your toddler. In place of sand and water, you get vast stretches of grassy flats with some trees, perfect for your child’s boundless energy.
There are also a bunch of fun activities that your toddler can enjoy and learn from at the park. Playing catch, for example, is perfect in the park’s vast open space. Whether with a football or a frisbee, your toddler will have plenty of physical exercises, such as running and jumping.
Also, if you have a dog, you can bring your pet to the park with your little one so they can play fetch or chase each other around. Lastly, if it is windy enough, you can even try flying a kite.
Courtesy of National Park Service
Many consider camping one of the best outdoor activities you can experience and learn from. So, let your little one taste what it feels like to camp outside. However, to keep the danger levels at a minimum, start them with some backyard camping first. This way, they can go through the motions of camping without you worrying so much about wildlife, sudden weather changes, food, or even bathroom concerns.
Let your toddlers experience some basic camping skills by asking them to help pitch the tent, prepare the beds, and even roast the food. At night, you can huddle around the bonfire for some stories or look up at the night sky for awesome stargazing activities. If anything goes wrong, you’re just a few steps away from the familiar comforts of your home.
Whichever activity you choose, the important thing is your toddler understands that he can safely learn from and enjoy activities even when he’s outside the house. Let him experience and learn from these outdoor activities now.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the different risks associated with outdoor activities?
These are some of the risks associated with doing outdoor activities:
- Getting too much UV exposure (sunburn)
- Being subjected to adverse weather conditions
- Encountering parasitic insects and wild animals
- Encountering noxious plants
How can you ensure safety in outdoor activities?
To make sure that your kids remain safe when doing outdoor activities:
- Make them do proper stretching before any physical activity
- Tell them to wear proper attire for your outdoor activity
- Remind them to drink water regularly, especially when the weather is hot
- Wear some sunscreen if you plan to stay under the sun for long periods
- plan out your activity carefully before carrying it out with the kids
- Inspect your site before bringing the kids with you to be able to do proper planning
Which safety tips for outdoor activities should you always remember?
These safety tips should always be considered before doing any outdoor activities:
- Always bring a first aid kid (preferably with more than enough supplies for all outdoor participants)
- Check the weather report or forecast before heading out to your outdoor venue
- Go to the venue early or ahead of time to inspect potential hazards
- If possible, assign buddy teams to keep an extra eye out for danger and also to make sure someone always knows where you are
What are the best practices for outdoor play?
Before letting your kids play outside, consider the following best practices:
- Make sure to have someone watching them or staying with them all the time. Never leave the kids alone when they’re playing outside.
- Make them understand that no matter what happens, they should not play on the streets or near them. If their toys roll or bounce off towards the street, they should always ask an adult to help them.
- Inspect the outdoor area for potential dangers before the kids play and even while playing to prevent accidents.
- Make sure that you have another adult ready to help in case you encounter an emergency, and you need an extra hand managing the kids
- Always have a phone with you when you let the kids play outdoors so you can call for help in case of accidents or serious injuries.
What are the three most common outdoor injuries/accidents for kids?
According to statistics, the three most common outdoor injuries or accidents that kids encounter include fractures, sprains, and strains. Most cases come from accidental falls and trips during running, chasing, and jumping.