18 Aug Getting Your Kids to Spend More Time Outside
Now that school has moved online in many parts of the country, one particular challenge that many parents face is getting kids to spend some time outside every day. Normally when they’re at school, kids have daily lunch, physical education, and outdoor recess where they can socialize, play games, or simply enjoy the sunshine. But more and more time indoors can be very harmful to kids, both with the excess of screen time, and lack of physical activity. Since it’s so important that they do not lose this aspect of their lives, here are our tips to help get your kids the outside time they need.
Since studying all day can be really tiring for teens, the best thing you can do as a parent is prepare their lunch to be eaten outside. Sitting outside and eating lunch as a family will not only be a source of closeness and connection for you all, it will also get them off the screen. They will not feel as tempted to just watch YouTube or Netflix while they take a break from online classes anymore.
Give Them a Break
After your teens finish a school project, an assignment or some homework, you can make a deal with them – they can have ten minutes free if they spend it outdoors. Since getting outdoors is so good for kids’ mental as well as physical state, a little break from their daily routine will be totally worth it. Getting out and breathing fresh air will do wonders to their overall attitude, and be a huge boost of energy for the rest of their day.
Encourage your kids to go outside and play their favorite sports whenever you get the chance. If you have a basketball hoop or soccer goal in your backyard – even better. If not, take them to your nearest park. You can even encourage them to play simple games that do not necessarily require a lot of equipment or space. It doesn’t matter what they do, just as long as they’re active.
Try organizing neighborhood walks every night with your family, or even with other families that you can social distance with. Being around kids their own age will give them a sense of community, and will help break the monotony of feeling stuck in the house with the same people every day. Just make sure to be safe and they will love it.
Let the Kids Plan
One thing that could also help is allowing your kids to plan their own outside time. It will get them more interested in it and will help with their time management skills. They will have to organize their homework and online class time so that they can enjoy outdoor activities throughout the day. Good time management is a key life skill that you can help them build during this time.
The more you can get your kids outside, the better. It is important to remember that without free time they will find it difficult to stay motivated on their school work. Make sure to set aside time every day for them to get outside and play, and you will notice a huge difference in their attitude, their energy levels, and their mental health.