It’s really starting to feel like fall here. Fall and spring are my favorite seasons because of the beautiful colors and the mild weather. It’s the best time of year to get outside and play!
I cannot stress enough the importance of outdoor physical play for children. (And adults!) My job as a technical assistant to child care teachers often involves me helping create outdoor areas. We encourage (well, actually it’s required) an hour a day minimum spent outside. Children learn so much when they’re outdoors. In addition to the obvious gross motor skills and exercise they are learning about nature, cooperation, physics and more. And it’s all happening naturally. (Yes, when you go down a slide and you speed up as you fall down, you’re learning a simple lesson on physics!)
Even though I mentioned loving spring and fall, that doesn’t mean I don’t love going outside in summer and winter, too. There’s a saying we use at work when we talk about outdoor play-there’s no bad weather, just bad clothing. Prepare for the weather, schedule around the weather, and have fun! One of my favorite memories from college was during a heavy summer rain storm. We all ran outside a played an impromptu game of dodge ball. In the rain. We had a blast! Just because it’s raining (or snowing) doesn’t mean the outdoor fun has to stop-it just makes it different. (And maybe even more fun!)
So what does my family love to do outside? All sorts of things! The parents just put in a pool this summer and we all loved every minute of it. My niece just started playing soccer this month. (Seriously, three year old soccer is the cutest thing ever!) My brother in law’s farm does special hay rides and pumpkin picking in the fall. Searching for Christmas trees and playing in the snow in winter is always fun. And running around after Easter eggs in the spring is always a highlight.
But getting outdoors isn’t just about the special occasions. It’s about taking any occasion and making it special. Something as simple as grabbing some bubbles and going outside to catch them. Taking a ball and running around a make-shift baseball diamond. It’s about getting outside, getting active and having fun!
Clorox 2 wants you to take the Play 2Day Pledge. I encourage you all to go here: http://clorox2play2day.com and take the pledge to play outside. When you take the pledge you can win a trip to Yosemite National Park and other great prizes.
So what are you waiting for? Get outside and play today!
I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Clorox2® blogging program, for a gift card worth $40. For more information on how you can participate, click here.