In the ever growing age of the computer screen and games console, playing outside is a trend that seems to be something some children can’t bear. However, that does not mean to say it isn’t an essential component to development.
In fact, if anything, playing outside is something that should be encouraged whenever possible.
The pre-school age and above can learn and develop so much in outdoor play. When they jump, run or even leap they are actively keeping fit, improving their co-ordination and of course having fun!
Even things like ball throwing or pushing a swing can all assist them in their handling skills and eye-hand co-ordination.
So in this blog, we thought we would inspire you (and hopefully your children) to see outdoor play as something preferable to sitting in front of a television or computer to learn and experience the world around.
Being outdoors and playing is an essential part of social and emotional development – so it’s not just about physical fitness and beating obesity. Children when they play together have to make decisions, be imaginative and of course learn to get along with others. These are valuable things when it comes to growing up and of course being an adult. Therefore, if your children aren’t doing this they have only themselves to work with.
A great example of this is in game or role playing. When children get together they have to devise rules and of course stories to make the experience more real. Promoting outdoor play allows them to do this safely and of course gives them a great understanding of why rules are important. If they get it wrong or disagree with someone while they’re playing, they will also have to figure out a way to resolve it. Again, when they start getting to school these are all things that will help them adjust socially and get along with people more easily.
Of course outdoor play on toys can also be used to promote learning of all kinds of things. It could be number related (perhaps asking them to count the steps to the slide) or it could be an opportunity to link their imaginary world with facts and history.
If we all take a trip down memory lane to our childhoods, there’s a good chance that TV may have been in there somewhere. However some of the most vivid memories are being outdoors doing things! Whether it was the paddling pool or trampoline these are the things that bring joy.
What sort of activities outdoors?
Here’s a few suggestions for you to consider if you are looking to get your children fit and active outside rather than inside!
Use your climbing frame like an obstacle course. It could be a (friendly) timed competition where each child must climb the ladder, go down the slide, use the ropes etc. Anything that gives them a chance to ‘win’.
Get them to create a story with their climbing frame. It could be you start with a problem (princess caught in the tower) and then get the children to create a story that involves a rescue!
There are so many things you can do with your children and their outdoor play equipment so why not get them inspired today and get down to Wicken Toys so they can try out one of the largest displays you’ll ever see!
You never know, it may be the best choice you ever make!