Officials around the world are saying “social distancing” is the key to flattening the curve of Covid-19. For anyone with a toddler or young child though, the idea of “isolating indoors” for a few weeks might sound a little daunting!
Try playing in the yard with your child and connecting to nature. Not only will you benefit from a bit of the good and golden stuff, Vitamin D, but outdoor activities provide opportunities to engage in unstructured, imaginative play which can boost creativity and feelings of well-being! Bring on those
And while you might not want to venture to the local park just yet, here are five activities that you can try in a small backgarden or outdoor space.
Obstacle courses have a wide range of benefits for children, promoting skills like motor planning, problem solving, strength and balance and coordination. Try jumping over brooms, using hoola hoops, walking the plank or kicking balls. How cute (and clever!) are our children from Meerilinga’s Early Learning Program at Kingsley participating in our Obstacle Course last week!
2. Make a Mud Cake!
Mixing soil, mud and water is never a bad time! Mud is a wonderful and sensory open-ended material that meets children with all different types of needs. Mold endless sculptures and develop problem solving skills!
3. Paint with Nature!
Collect natural materials like leaves, honky nuts, flowers and twigs to use as a paintbrush. Painting with nature can aid fine and gross motor skills, colour recognition and can be a great device for imaginative play and storytelling! If you haven’t got any paint try making your own using food dye, a bit of flour and some water.
4. Scavenger Hunt
It may not be Easter yet, but why not try a scavenger hunt! Hide items of your choice in the garden and watch your child delight in finding them. Scavenger hunts develop patience, teamwork and problem solving skills (keep the clues nice and easy for toddlers!)
5. Baby steps
For babies under 1, try tummy time outside! Look at leaves and flowers or let bubs try crawling on the grass.
Outdoor play is an important aspect of early childhood. Engaging in the outdoors contributes to key physical and mental development!