Hours spent lounging in front of the TV. Screaming tantrums when they’re told to get offline. Friendships with people you’ve never actually met, but you’ve seen their pictures online countless times. Sound familiar? Welcome to 21st Century parenting.
Whilst technology has greatly helped the development of plenty of kids, and the activities they engage in, it’s unfortunately left far too few of them actually getting outside. The good news though, is that if you’re worried about this, it’s never too late! Kids love the outdoors, it’s just a matter of getting them involved. Why not make this year’s family holiday a camping trip? It’s a great way to get them to see the wonders of nature, without you ever having to stress about ‘stranger danger’ – an unfortunate but very real reason why many of our children don’t step foot past the door once school’s out. You’ll be there to take care of them! You can cram all kinds of fun activities into excursions of this kind – from fishing, to cycling, swimming and more. It’s an escape from the big city and, even better, an escape from their screens.
Of course, meeting our furry friends has always been something kids have tended to love, and this new generation is no exception! If the kids are free just for the day, rather than sticking on a DVD, pay a visit to your local zoo or farm, or even places like butterfly enclosures, so that they can enjoy a bit of company from those who can’t interact on any platform other than the ones given to them at birth!
If camping or expensive day trips aren’t really so much of an option for you, you can encourage your kids to get some fresh air from your very own home. If you’ve got a garden, getting the children involved can be a lot of fun. Companies like Be Garden Happy have some amazing furniture for the patio so the kids can sit and reflect on their hard work, or they can even add the finishing touches to a water feature with some awesome light up orbs. If nothing else, they’ll get some great Instagram pictures, so it’s a happy compromise all around.
If you don’t have a garden, it’s not game over. Joining a club or team at school can be a great way of getting young people out and about. Whether they’re running around open fields or just on a court, it’s a great way of getting fresh air and developing an interest in being active. Plus, it will give them the much needed exercise so many do without. Joining in these sorts of events often leads to curiosity for more, and before you know it, they’re off on field trips exploring mountains and oceans and everything between, with the added security of being under the expert care of an educator.
The world may well have changed, but as with anything, it’s all about how you adapt. All is not lost!