Thursday, April 21, 2016

Kids Need To Play Outside!

What happened to kids being able to go out and ride their bike, build a fort, climb a tree, or play hide-and-seek? What happened to them being able to go out and explore their little part of the world while pretending, learning, and creating as they went? What happened to them being able to go outside and get dirty and maybe a skinned knee? 
I know I'm not the only one that has realized that kids don't play outside much anymore. And I know I'm not the only one that is saddened by that. Yet, kids still don't play outside much. I have talked to many parents and read countless articles supporting kids needing to get outside but have seen very little physical support. And I know that some parents will argue that their kids play sports and get a lot of outside time playing them. While that's healthy and fun, I am talking more about time outside doing unplanned things that they themselves get to come up with. 

It is through this type of unhindered playing that kids strengthen themselves. They make themselves who they want to be. They learn things on their own, build and fix things on their own, socialize on their own, and best of all, learn to be themselves on their own. 

Now, if your kids aren't used to playing outside on their own, they may not know what to do at first and may not be motivated to come up with the endless ways to occupy themselves. However, I found in my own experience of changing the downward spiral of kids growing up too fast, that once they catch the outdoor itch, they beg to go outside. Even if they have to be kicked out of the house a few times first. Trust me, the motivation soon comes. There's nothing like going outside to see your kids playing hardcore in the dirt or running around the yard playing tag. It's priceless!

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