Whether you are trying to get your children to get involved in new activities, learn some new skills, burn off excess energy or a combination of these, there are a variety of outdoor activities that are both fun and engaging. Using your imagination and any resources that are available to you, plan activities that children between the ages of 7 and 12 will enjoy.
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During traditional relay races, the children will separate into two teams. The members of each team alternate running to a specified point and back to the team. Once a player returns to their team, he tags the next runner, who then also runs to a specific point and back to the team. This continues until each member of the team arrives back at the starting point. There are more interesting ways to run a relay race. Some examples include having the children, hop, skip, jump or crawl instead of running. They also can add in a small beanbag or ball that can be kicked while racing.
Create a list of items that need to be found and give it to the children. The list can be made up of anything that the kids can find such as a specific colored rock, leaf or a branch that has a specific shape. Have the children go out and search for the items on the list and bring the items back once they are found. The first child -- or children if playing with teams -- who finds all of the items on the list wins a prize. If you want the children to find large items such as a type of car, color of house or type of animal, turn the game into a photo hunt. In a photo hunt, the children are given a camera to take pictures of the items once they are found. The photos are uploaded to a computer. Prizes can be awarded for being the first person to find all of the items, as well as the most creative photos.
Making an outdoor canvas is a great way for children to participate in an outdoor activity, even those who lack athletic skills. When making an outdoor canvas, you will never have to worry about the floors or furniture getting stained and cleanup is a snap. Additionally, children are able to get more in touch with their creative side through the creation of art. Some art supplies that are both easy-to-use and perfect for use outdoors include finger paints and sidewalk chalk. For the actual canvas, the children can use the chalk to draw on the driveway or sidewalk. For the paints, an old sheet or T-shirts can be hung on a tree or fence. Allow the kids to create anything that comes to mind.