If you search "Backyard Play Ideas," on Pinterest, I assure you, you will find dozens upon dozens of pins revolved around giant wooden treehouses and magnificent forts, build your own chalkboards and amazing sand pits that will make your children trilingual and assure they get into Harvard by the end of summer...
But I promise you, and please believe me when I tell you:
You do not need a special space to just get out and play.
No matter what your backyard looks like - gravel, patio, grass, forest... nature is the great equalizer. Use these three tips to find a way to play in any circumstance.
1. Break out the water
Fill up the largest bin you dare (dig out those old containers for dinner leftovers, or find those empty plastic bins in the back corner of your garage) and bring it outside for your little. Set it down, present your child with the kitchen supplies, and watch your little wow you!
We change the container and amount of water based on the season - giant tubs (almost pools to a toddler) for the mid-summer heat, small leftover tupperware bins for the cooler spring and fall.
Let your toddler splash and throw water to try their hand at patio or brick "painting," grab nearby rocks, sticks, leaves to see what floats... or simply watch as they move water back and forth from container to container!
The options are endless, free, and easy. Bonus points if it ends in a water fight =)
2. go on a treasure hunt!
3. create a play space
Make this a together project with your little! What do they most want out of their backyard?
Do you have a budding artist who could benefit from a DIY chalkboard wall? A bulldozer enthusiast who could waste the day away with a sandpit and an excavator? A climber who would be more excited than on Christmas morning to wake up to an obstacle course made of giant stones and jumping logs?
Hang a birdhouse, build a fort, put out a sandbox and shovels, post a hammock... the options are as diverse as your bright and beautiful children.
This DOES NOT and SHOULD NOT break the bank! With a little creativity, even a simple strategically placed outdoor shelf can be slowly stocked with dollar store bubbles, balls, and other tools to promote outdoor play!
I hope these ideas are helpful in getting you and your little outdoors! Now over to you - what are your favorite, go-to backyard play activities?? Share in the comments for all of us to benefit!
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