10 Ways to Get More From Walks with Children

Liven up your walks with some fun and learning!
A post written and shared by Aimee at Raising the Cameron Clan.  
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It is no secret that there is an obesity epidemic in the United States. As parents it is important that we do our part to encourage our kids to get out there and move. Going for a walk is an easy way to get everyone moving. However, sometimes it takes a little creativity to get your kids out the door.

 Here are 10 ways to have fun and learn while out on your walk.

1. Make a scavenger hunt. Write a list of things to find or for non-readers you can make a picture list of objects for them to cross off as you walk. This list can be based on colors, or certain objects or a certain numbers of objects; it just depends on where you are walking.

2. Take Pictures. My boys love to take pictures when we go on walks. You can give them an old camera, buy a disposable or help them use yours, but kids enjoy taking pictures. When you get home, you can take those pictures and make them into a simple book.learn and have fun on walk with your kids

3. Nature Rubbings. A fun way to talk about nature is to do some crayon rubbings on things that are outside. A tree trunk, the sidewalk, a leaf, the drain can all be great ways to talk about the textures in the world around us.

4. Go on a bug/hunt. Take a magnifying glass and look at ants, spiders, beetles or any other bugs you see on your walk. This is a great segway into lots of other conversations like the difference between bugs and spiders. If you are really brave you can bring along a container and collect some of these bugs so that you can examine them closer when you get home. We have done this with rollie pollies.

 have fun and learn while out with kids

5. Make leaf impressions. Bring a bag and collect different types of leaves. When you get home make a batch of salt dough to press your leaves into so that you are left with the leaf impression. Once the salt dough dries, you can paint your leaves and have a nature inspired piece of art.

have fun and learn on walk with kids

6. Collect and Dissect. Go out and collect acorns, flowers, and leaves, then bring the home and look inside them. My boys love to bring home different size acorns and look inside them. It is a way to work on comparing objects and to see how things look on the inside.

 7. Gather “treasures” for an art project. A walk is a great way to gather free art supplies. Go out and gather “treasures” then come home and let them create. It amazes me to see what my boys create.

have fun outside on walk with kids and learn

8. Turn your walk into an obstacle course. Jump over those cracks in the sidewalk. Run a circle around the bench. Touch that tree. Run fast, STOP! These are all ways to turn a simple walk into a listening and tiring activity.

 9. I spy … One of my favorite ways to keep my boys actively involved in a walk is to play the I spy game. I spy the letter S. I spy something red. I spy something yellow. The possibilities are endless. 

10. What does that sign mean? As you walk past any type of sign, ask them what they think the sign might mean. This helps develop critical thinking skills as well as familiarize your kids with the world around them.

However, the most important part of any walk is to have fun!

How do you have fun on walks with your kids?


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Aimee is a former teacher turned SAHM of three young boys and a husband who travels weekly. She writes about her daily adventures, homeschooling, crafting, running, weight loss, cooking, and life lessons she has learned along the way. You can read about how she is experiencing life with her boys at Raising the Cameron Clan.   
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Comments

  1. Kathy Winter says

    I like all the ideas here.

    Everyday after school, my 2nd grader and I walk a few laps around the school's track and talk about her day. Nice mommy and me time.

  2. Deb @ home life simplified says

    Love this – we do many of these things especially the collecting for art projects and dissection- i love the obstacle course idea! My 8yo just got a camera for Christmas so think I will give the almost 7yo my camera and let the 2 of them document a walk next time.

  3. SarahElisabeth says

    Really like your ideas and am sure we will use these.
    We collect sticks and stones or at least my 3year does-we had quite a splendid collection by the front door! Need to think of a project for them.
    The children love looking for shapes in trees and branches. We regularly pass the crocodile and the "king of the castle".

  4. FourJedis says

    So cute. I love your ideas. We take a lot of walks but I never thought about the boys camera along. They would love to do leaf impressions.

  5. Hip Chic Tot says

    I feel like a bad mum here, reading your tips & all the comments!

    I need to pull my socks up and start our walks again – but our Sydney weather isnt really cooperating either (excuses excuses i know)

  6. says

    These are absolutely fantastic! I could use at least 8 of the 10 with my kids. Scavenger hunts, taking pictures, I spy and jumping over cracks etc.. is excellent. My kids are 4 and 6 and they LOVE taking picutres. They have kid cameras that are endlessly full of the hundreds of pictures that they can take in 1 day.

    I saved this list and Im going to use the scavenger hunt today after dinner. Thanks for the great ideas!

  7. says

    We love walking, and are always out and about regardless of weather. I too believe its hugely important to encourage your children to walk, but its our responsibility as parents to make it fun and exciting for them. I have also wrote a post about the importance of walking with your children. :-)

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