Spring Months Ahead – If Kids Learn, Why Not?
Spring’s arrival puts an end to winter, and offers many options for children during the warmer months.
For many families, this is the perfect time to explore outdoor adventures or relax with friends and family.
But do parents and children devote any thought to learning while outdoors?
For some, this is a good time to review outdoor education courses, for others, it might just be the perfect excuse to immerse children in learning outdoors.
Preschoolers love nature and can spend hours learning about plants and animals, whether that’s studying in the classroom or at home. After all, when your kid visits a natural area and discovers a new plant or flower, she won’t get tired of doing it again anytime soon.
For other grades, activities that involve several students outside might be beneficial. Students of all ages can explore more than just obstacles or words on a map. Studies show that learning outside and about new things can be, well, exciting.
Here are some fun educational games for spring/summer:
1. The Rolling Game.
If you live by a big pond or lake where ducks can often be found, and you want to practice spotting, then try this game:
Drop down into the water with a bucket on your back. Try to find as many ducks as you can at once. It might take a bit longer than if you just dropped down into a tree. You can carry a flag, although that may be a more effective strategy. By the end of the hour, you will have found as many ducks as you can.
2. Bird Watch, for Kids.
Whether you live in a jungle or deep inland waterway, you can teach your child about birds by observing and letting him photograph the birds. Find a natural area where you can collect some seeds, sticks, or anything else that might attract birds. Then, bring your camera to the picnic table and feed the birds. Some of the green plants in your yard might attract birds, including a local rhododendron.
3. Raise the Flag, for Kids.
One game that can be played all year long is Flag, which involves placing an American flag across the grass between two marked areas. As the game progresses, more and more Americans will be raised onto the grass in an exciting and memorable way.
A good example of this game can be found in Aruba, though you can work on it anywhere.
Fall and Winter
Here’s a fun and educational game to play outdoors this fall and winter:
Dust off the hat you wore during the summer or winter; a little black dot is cast at the top of it.
Each time the black dot is struck, drop a pair of pants on the ground. Your boots should pop up like regular shoes and become several feet tall within a minute or two.
When you’re done, place a pair of thongs on the ground.
This game teaches children about the weather. When it’s warm, you don’t need a hat, because you’ll be able to hide dirty underwear on it. But when it’s cold, you have to don a hat. Kids can also read about weather conditions or experience weather conditions, like your favorite songs make the experience of throwing snowballs seem less fun.
Many playgrounds and other areas in areas that benefit from the weather have items that encourage exercise, like a few sets of ski poles in the yard or a football game on a small football field. Parents might also want to get their children out of the house and into the sunshine when possible.
© 2015 Devine Creative; distributed by Baycrest Press, LLC.