One of the best posts I’ve read about outside play is this one by Trish at Little Eco Footprints (one of my favourite blogs).* Like Trish’s little girl, my kids don’t need a lot of ‘stuff’ to have a good time in our backyard. They spontaneously put together the coolest stuff – like a sundial, a fairy garden, a dirt cafe and, rather randomly, a natural jewellery shop.
It helps, I think, that our backyard is the bush. They have the run of their own private reserve that borders our home on two sides. Added to that there are rocks to climb, a pool to swim, hoops to shoot, swings to swing, trampolines to bounce and chickens to chase. It really is the best sort of place for a kid and my kids make the most of it.
To make this holiday-at-home a bit extra-special, I’ve sourced some truly fab games and activities for making the most of the great (well, standard 1/4 acre block) outdoors.
1. Create a yarn trail that leads to a few treasures.
2. Build a Minecraft fort (Dad will need to help with this one!)
3. Do some mud target practice (using homemade chalk to draw the targets, of course!).
4. When I’m right there with them and the fireys say it’s okay, we’ll be lighting the bonfire.
5. Make a bird feeder and consult the bird book to identify any visitors.
6. Create a backyard ball run.
7. Go on a photo challenge hunt.
8. Have a go at nature sorting.
9. Make a sun dial that works.
10. Grow something.
11. Play a little ‘mystery sound’.
12. Draw an amazing chalk world.
13. Collect some pebbles to make these owls.
14. Go on a creature hunt.
15. Create a backyard obstacle course.
16. Get into cloud appreciation.
17. Make a shaving cream slip and slide (should have filed this one under ‘messy’!)
18. Try a spot of nature weaving.
19. Go on a backyard camping trip.
20. Make a mud pond (if I dare!)
21. Draw our shadows.
22. Give sheet painting a go.
23. Start a nature journal.
24. Feed the birds.
25. Make a bow and arrow (maybe).