Let’s go out! 4 fun-tastic ideas for outdoor family play

This guest post is written by Sarah from The Playful Parents. She is a real play enthusiast, and has infected many around her with the play bug (including me). She has reminded me that life with children should be about play, so let’s not take things too seriously, starting from today.

Here are some fun and easy ideas for outdoor play. Take it away, Sarah!

~~~~~

Tired of your usual haunts and in need for some fresh ideas on where to go as a family? Well, here are some ideas to set you off on brand new adventures. Best of all, they’re easy on your pocket, but big on fun!

#1. Discover & Conquer

You don’t have to travel far to find fun and adventures, really. As a non-car owner, I assure you that public transport travel with young children isn’t that scary or impossible. It is actually a rather wonderful way for our children to learn more about daily life.

Be a tourist around your neighbourhood. Head out on the bus, bike or on foot. Hit a street you’ve never been to before. I would dare say all neighbourhoods have gems waiting for us to discover. We just need to make the effort to look for them.

Butterfly-spotting: Trying to stand still long enough to see the butterflies

Try these neighbourhood conquests:

  • Play Trail: Do a playground hop to check out all the playgrounds. Perhaps you’ll be lucky and see if you can find any of the classic heritage Singapore playgrounds too!
  • Food Trail: Pick a favourite food and try every stall you find that sells it. Ask for recommendations from random strangers who live in the area. Search out the must-try stalls from online food bloggers.
  • Flora and Fauna Trail: Parks are fantastic treasure troves of biodiversity and great for kids to just run about. Go bird-watching or butterfly-spotting.  Singapore’s NParks has produced several fantastic guides and walking trails for you to download. I highly recommend exploring the park connector trails. Or how about going on a hunt for these10 Trees in Singapore?

# 2. Host An Outdoor Olympics

The Terrific Tot-lympian: Trying to cross a hurdle in his path

  • Bubbles. Play Blow and Pop: Someone blow up bubbles while another chases and pops them.
  • Catching in its many variants old and new: Police and Thief, Fire and Ice.  I especially enjoy the co-operative catching games where a group has to work together against the ‘catcher’ like  Eagle Catching the Chicks ( Lao Ying Zhua Xiao Ji) and What’s the time, Mr Wolf?( similar to Grandmother’s Footsteps).
  • Ball games: Basketball, football, volleyball, poison ball, monkey ball.
  • Sack races: An oldie-but-goodie that is good both indoor and outdoor.
  • Obstacle Races: Gather some neighbours and their children to have an obstacle race! Here’s a starter planning list.

# 3. Do Outdoor Art

How about letting the outdoors inspire you and your young ones? Pack up your art materials and sit at a nearby park to draw or paint. Crayons, watercolours-in-a-box and a sketch book are easily portable. Even better, use Nature itself to create art.

Stick + Sand + Kids = Artistic Fun!

Here is more mess-free stuff to try:

  • Chalk drawing: For a twist, bring along a water spray filled with water. Spray water on chalk drawings and see how your art changes.
  • Family Profile Silhouettes: Find a sunny spot. Stick up cardstock on the wall. Stand in front of the paper. Trace the silhouette cast. Cut along the outlines.
  • Water painting: All you need are brushes and some bottles of water to paint the floor.
  • Outdoor sculptures: Gather twigs, leaves, stones and whatever catches your fancy to construct your sculptures.
  • Make a kite and fly it!

#4. Go Geo-Caching: Contemporary Treasure Hunt

Have you heard of geocaching? It’s a ‘real world’, treasure hunt game you play using GPS devices. Many cities and countries around the world have geocaches so if you’re truly adventurous, you could even do this on your holiday. Here is a list of current geocaches in Singapore. Click here to find out more about how geocaching works!

For more playful ideas, do check out The Playful Parents.

About Sarah, Family Play Advocate

Sarah is an educator-storyteller-writer turned domestic circus ring mistress. She currently runs her circus show 24/7 starring 3 males, and counting. It can be a mad yet fulfilling life. A passionate advocate for more playfulness in life, Sarah enjoys sharing ideas and resources on practical ways to live more creatively, artfully and playfully on her blog. Swing on by and say ‘hello’ to other Playful Parents like you!

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