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Top 10 Outdoor Activities to Enjoy with Your Kids This Summer

Summer is a time when kids have a lot of energy and lots of options. The warm sun is shining, and the great outdoors is calling. Now is the perfect time to do fun and educational things with kids. Getting kids outside keeps them busy and lets them explore nature, learn new skills, and make memories that will last a lifetime. In this post, staff from a preschool in Potomac, MD, offer 10 of the best outdoor summer activities for kids to keep them happy, busy, and entertained all summer long.

What Do Children Do in Outdoor Play?

When children are outside, they have the room they need to play, stroll, and swing. They can play catch, ride bikes, climb trees, and crawl beneath bushes. Staff at a preschool in Potomac, MD, share that children not only get the exercise they need from playing outside, but it’s also an excellent way for them to build their self-esteem.

What Are the Best Outdoor Activities for Children?

No matter how big or small your outdoor area is, getting fresh air can make you feel better and help your kids sleep better at night. More than any other reason, going outside is just fun! And it’s great to have fun outside with the whole family.

1. Outside Art Projects

Let their imaginations run wild with art projects outside. Give them a board and some paints, chalk, or even things from nature, like flowers and leaves. They are free to let their imaginations run wild when they are outside making art.

You may have seen the “stained glass” geometric sidewalk chalk art pieces. Painter’s tape and outdoor chalk are all you need. With your kids, tape off your driveway or path into geometric shapes. Then, let everyone use any color they want to fill in the blanks. Or, let them draw whatever they want to make their own unique art.

Girl painting outside

2. Scavenger Hunts

Scavenger hunts can help kids develop their sense of excitement and curiosity. They also help people work together to solve problems and give them a chance to learn about nature.

You can make the scavenger hunt as hard or as easy as possible. Print out or draw detailed clues and send your kids outside with general directions to find treasures and bring them back. Give the kids a brown paper bag, small basket, or bucket to put their finds in, and give them binoculars, a flashlight, or a magnifying glass to help them look. This will make the hunt feel a little more serious.

You can adapt the scavenger hunt to your child’s age and level of growth to help them learn skills and ideas outside of school. Little kids can hunt for things based on color, shape, feel, size, or first letter alone. For older kids, make the hunt more challenging by adding extra jobs.

3. Water Activities

Water play is a great way to cool off and have fun when it’s really hot outside. For hours of fun, set up a small pool, throw water balloons around, or buy a slip-and-slide. Doing things in the water cools you down and helps your balance and motor skills.

Little girl playing outside with the water hose, enjoying the summer.

4. Picnics

Grab a couple of blankets and pack up some of your kid’s favorite lunch foods, then go to a nearby park for a picnic. Enjoy the outdoors and tasty treats while you play games or just chill out. It gives the family a chance to spend time together and enjoy the easy things in life. Don’t want to head out; you can still enjoy a picnic in your backyard.

5. Camp Outs

Plan a camping trip for the whole family to get away from your everyday life. Kids can get close to nature when they go camping, whether it’s in your own backyard or a nearby park. Teach them how to camp, include them in the planning portion, and show them how to pitch a tent and start a fire. Get the s’mores ingredients out and assemble around the fire! Singing campfire songs, grilling hot dogs, and telling stories are ways kids can have fun in a campground or in their own backyard.

6. Planting a Garden

Gardening with kids can help them develop a love of nature and a sense of duty. Let them help you pick out plants, dig holes in the ground, and water the garden. They can learn about the climate, patience, and the joys of growing something from a seed to a flower this way. You can set aside an area in your yard for an inground garden or try your hand at container gardening.

Child playing with garden sprinkler, jumping over

7. Rock Decorating

Have your kids gather rocks during your next family hike or other outdoor activity. They can use stickers, paint, markers, glitter, and other art tools at home to make the stones look cool. Show off your finished projects around the house, use them as paperweights, or give them to family and friends!

8. Creating a Fairy Garden

You can add some magic to your yard with a fairy garden, which includes tiny houses, paths, and doors on trees. To keep the cost of this activity low, tell the kids to get creative with things they can find in the yard and around the house. For example, this cute entry is made from pebbles, scrap wood, and a push pin.

Instead, you can turn a part of your yard into a magical fairy ring where the kids can play and dream all day. Let your kids help you plant lots of flowers, and then add fun things like lanterns, garden figures, and a small table to finish.

9. Backyard Movies

With a projector, moving family movie night outside is easy by putting up a white sheet screen. It’s a great idea to put down a blanket and some pillows to watch your best movies outside under the stars.

10. Pool Noodle Obstacle Course

Pool noodles are not super expensive and can be used for many fun tasks with kids. By driving pencils or dowels into the ground and rolling the noodles over them, you can turn them into an obstacle course the kids must get through.

Final Thoughts

Parents and caregivers at a preschool in North Potomac, MD, know just how priceless it is to watch children discover new things, go on adventures, and make memories that will last a lifetime. You may encourage them to develop a passion for nature, encourage them to be physically active, and increase their cognitive and social development by having them participate in these ten of the finest outdoor summer activities.

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