Summer officially begins on June 21, and it’s the perfect time to take to the outdoors! Some of our our favorite outdoor games and activities can help children learn and grow across all areas of development!
Here are a few of our favorites:
- Chalk art: Drawing with chalk is a great way to foster imagination and creativity! Each child can use a square of sidewalk as a canvas for their artwork. Take a photo of each drawing for them to take home and display, like they would drawings on paper.
- Water painting: Keep the creativity alive, without the chalk, by painting outside with water. Fill bowls or buckets with water and take them outside. Give children paintbrushes in different sizes to dip in water and paint the sidewalk. No cleanup required!
- Hopscotch: This game helps children develop in a few different ways. First, as they draw the hopscotch board, they have to think about connecting the squares. When it’s time to play, hopscotch builds number recognition. Finally, hopping from square to square encourages muscle development and balance.
- Duck, Duck, Gray Duck: This game helps both motor and cognitive skills. Running around the circle boosts large muscle development, while tapping everyone on the head works on finer hand-eye coordination. Those seated in the circle have to watch the person who is “it,” and think about what he or she might say next.
- Gardening: Working in a garden stretches throughout the summer and into fall. Help children plant seeds or already started plants in the ground, and check on the garden every two to three days to water and measure the plants. Gardening helps build patience as a child waits for vegetables to arrive. Marking a plant’s progress in a notebook teaches math and measurement skills, and shows how plants grow over time. As the vegetables are ready, use them for snack time or send home to use at a family meal.
- Bubbles: Blowing bubbles is an opportunity for children to work on eye-hand coordination as they dip the bubble wand into the container. It also teaches cause and effect, as breath creates bubbles and bubbles pop when caught. Chasing bubbles through the yard encourages motor development. And it’s fun!