Source: Ashley Osborne, 4-H Youth Development Extension Specialist
The weather is starting to improve and with it comes a great opportunity to get youngsters away from their electronics and encouraged to get outside to enjoy nature. According to research from Harvard Medical School, getting outdoors has many benefits, including increased vitamin D levels, increased physical activity, improved mood, improved focus, and faster healing.
Here are some suggestions to help young people venture outdoors.
- Offer fun activities. Sidewalk chalk and bubbles are great inexpensive incentives for playing outside. Many young people also enjoy “fun chores,” like walking the dog.
- Make it a game. Kickball and dodgeball are fun games to play as a family or with a group in your neighborhood. You can’t go wrong with a game of hide and seek either.
- Organize an insect safari and encourage young people to look for and listen to insects. They may even want to take photos of the insects they find to submit to a 4-H Digital Insect Collection.
- Show youngsters the wonders of nature. Watch sunrises or sunsets or gaze at the stars with your family. Walk around and look at the different buds on different types of trees.
For more ideas on getting young people outdoors, contact the (COUNTY NAME) office of the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service.
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