By Nephitearya “Clove” Bailey, Camp Director, Camp Graham
When we think of being in the “great” out-of-doors, the first things that come to mind are camping and long nature hikes. With the hustle and bustle of school, work, family and extra-curricular commitments during the week, many families reserve outdoor activities for the weekend. However, no matter the day or season, there are simple ways to get your family outside and enjoying nature. In honor of Get Outside, part of our Girl Scout Spirit Week, here are 6 simple ideas to help get you going:
Have a picnic dinner local park or even in your own backyard. As you eat, take notice of the sights and sounds around you.
Go on an Adventure
Create a treasure hunt or neighborhood scavenger hunt. Bury an object somewhere in your yard and create a map to follow or create clues to lead you on a journey around the neighborhood.
Spread a blanket in your yard and look at the moon, stars and the night sky or take a night walk around your neighborhood. Flashlights or glow sticks can make an ordinary stroll extraordinary!
Make nature crafts or outdoor art. From sidewalk chalk drawings to building a fairy house out of materials found in your yard, or creating stick figures (instructions below) there are tons of outdoor craft ideas.
Stick Figure Instructions:
- Clean a fallen branch or stick and remove any loose bark.
- Give your stick a base coat of white acrylic paint.
- When dry, paint your creature. You can even add yarn to give it hair or a tail!
Do some outdoor service in your neighborhood or a local park. You can pick up trash or plant wildflowers or bulbs in a common area. You can also do some beautification in your own yard planting flowers, pulling weeds or planting a small vegetable garden.
Construct a loose parts free play area in your yard using materials such as hula hoops, jump ropes, bubbles, puppets, sidewalk chalk, cardboard boxes, clay, pots/pans/plastic containers, water hose, bug boxes, tarps, gardening tool, sticks, rocks- anything that can be moved!
Being in the out-of-doors does not mean you have to be in the woods. Just about anything you normally do indoors, can be taken outside. Challenge yourself to get you and your family outside experiencing nature at least once per week. Whatever you choose to do, just go outside!