Summer outdoor activities
Summer Outdoor Activities
Summer is a great time to get outside and enjoy the sunshine.
Kids love simple activities such as kicking a ball around on the
back lawn. Here are some more ideas to help keep your kids occupied
outdoors this summer.
Hit the beach
New Zealanders love the beach, and beaches around the country
are favorite holiday and day-trip spots. The beach is a great place
to try out all the new Christmas presents, like boogie boards and
buckets and spades. Pack up a picnic lunch or dinner, and it makes
for a cheap outing, but one that your child will remember forever.
Some beaches also have coin-operated barbeques.
Young children may enjoy playing in the sand, feeling the
different textures of wet and dry sand. They may also enjoy
splashing in the shallow water, and picking up different shaped
shells and sticks.
Rock pools are a great entertainer for older children. They
might find crabs, shells, seaweed and many other treasures. Make
sure they wear shoes to avoid any nasty cuts!
Kids love water, and the warm summer weather is the perfect
opportunity to get wet!
A paddling pool in the back yard is perfect for young kids, and
it doesn't have to be an expensive inflatable one. A large, shallow
container, even a baby bath, will provide hours of entertainment
when filled with water. Try adding different flowers and leaves to
make a pond. Or add glitter and bubble bath for a bubbly 'fairy
bath'. Plastic containers are great for pouring games, even a
handful of bath toys will take on new meaning outdoors.
If it's swimming you're after, check out your local yellow
pages. Many areas have open-air pools which are open to the public
free of charge over the summer.
Remember, when near water it is important to watch your children
at all times. Young children can drown in only a few millimeters of
Young children have vivid imaginations, and there are so many
outdoor activities which promote this.
A couple of old bedsheets slung over some low tree branches
makes a great 'hut', or 'cave', or 'hideout'. The possibilities are
Your child could host a 'tea party' for his or her dolls and
stuffed toys on the back lawn. A few plastic cups, some water for
'tea' and some pretend 'food' makes a great tea party - even better
if mum provides some fruit or a surprise treat!
Young children love to explore outdoors, and New Zealand has an
abundance of beautiful bush to explore.
Outdoor exploration is a great way for your child to learn about
his/her senses. Ask your child what he or she can hear, see or
smell. Explore the textures of different things you find - leaves,
Most areas have a variety of bush walking tracks, with
information about how steep the track is, how long the walk will
take, and whether the walk is shaded or exposed. Some bush walk
tracks are pram friendly, so even baby can join in the fun. For
more information, contact your local regional council or tourist
Many Kiwis make the most of the warm weather by taking care of
odd jobs outside. This is a great opportunity to spend time with
your child - he or she will love helping to weed the garden, or
wash the car, or even raking the clippings while you mow the
Remember to be sun safe!
When you are outside this summertime, remember to protect
yourself and your children from the sun. Apply sunscreen, and top
it up regularly, especially if you've been in the water. Wear a
hat, and make you're your children wear hats. If your young child
doesn't like to keep his or her hat on, try stitching a piece of
ribbon to each side so you can tie it on. Wear a T-shirt
rather than a singlet when in the hot sun, and try to stay out of
the sun during the hottest part of the day (between 11am and 3pm).
Young babies should stay in the shade as much as possible.