Outdoor play enables children to enjoy the natural environment and learn to seek out exercise, fresh air, and activity. It is also fun and rejuvenating to be outside on a beautiful day.
This is a collection of my favorite outdoor activities for kids, including toddlers, preschoolers and older kids. Depending on the activity, even babies can play with these.
Can you transfer the water with the help of a sponge? The sponge will soak up the water, your child can squeeze it out to turn it into water again. Magic!
When the weather is warm, this is a good activity to keep the kids entertained with little setup and low cost. You only need water, bowls and sponges to keep your kids entertained in the summer. They transfer water from one bowl to the next.
This is a great activity for strengthening the muscles of your kid’s hands and fingers, and it is also a good way to cool off on a warm day.
Oh what a fun and messy activity this is! Kids splat paint with rice in a stocking.
I like this activity because it is a great gross motor activity, where kids use their arms and legs and have some messy fun. All you need are rice, stockings and paper and paint to do this activity.
Kids take the rice filled stocking, dip it into paint and make beautiful splat painting art with it.
This sensory quiet time activity is a very creative way of using your kid's teaset without using water or just air - use rice instead!
You simply fill a sensory bin with rice, add a toy teaset, and voilà - imaginary sensory play.
This activity is better with one kid at a time (except if you have two teapots).
This is such an interesting and easy activity. You freeze a block of ice and let your kids paint it.
This is a very useful activity to clean up any dishes left over from playing outside. Or your kids can wash some of their washable toys. Either way it’s a great activity to engage kids for a while.
It just takes a sensory bin, water, scrubbers, soap and some toys to entertain your kids for a long time.
Kids get to practice life skills in this sensory bin and copy you washing dishes.
Focus. Let’s transfer some ice!
Ice is fun to play with for kids and it's something everyone has in the house. This activity is great for the summer or warmer weather because one bin is filled with water and the other bin is filled with ice. You fill the bins and kids use tools to transfer the ice into the water.
This painting with water activity for kids are so simple and mess free. You just need water and cotton balls. Colored paper is great to have on hand. Just give your child some colored paper, a bowl full of water and cotton balls and they can paint with the water.
This bubble foam sensory activity is squeaky clean messy play.
Take tear-free bubble bath, and whip it up with water and food coloring. Make as many batches of different colors as you need.
Kids can use their imagination and play with this bubble sensory bin any way they choose.
This frozen paint art and sensory activity is so simple and it makes painting interesting again. Depending on the temperature of the weather it will be a different experience. In warmer weather it will be quicker to melt and in colder temperatures it will be slower to melt. But either way it will be fun to paint with frozen ice and can go together with a frozen theme.
“Dirty, dirty animals. Let’s wash you” - my son, aged almost 4 (who loves washing things).
My kids enjoy playing with water and dirt so this activity will keep them busy for a while. You just need dirt, animal figurines, soapy water and washing tools for your kids to play. They can dip the animals into the dirt and then wash them in the soapy water.
At first I thought this activity is a bit complicated for younger kids but it's actually great for introducing them to rhyming in a fun way. The pictures are bright and colorful and will be a delight to turn around. This activity also includes a beautiful printout.
This is a great activity when the weather is warmish. It only uses a few things that you have at home and kids usually love playing with water and bubbles.
“Let’s see how big a bubble you can blow with this straw and bubble solution!” or “See how mummy blows bubbles”. You say to your kids as they shriek with delight. Bubbles are fun!
I like this activity because it is so simple, requiring only a few basic supplies and you can make your own bubble solution. Older kids can blow the bubbles themselves and younger kids can play with the bubbles as you blow. Just add bubble solution to a bowl, add food coloring and blow away, letting your kids play.
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup bubble bath or dish soap
My kids love playing with water and painting. This activity combines both - painting with water.
You just need colored paper, paint brushes and water for your kids to paint with water.
Explode. Color change. Wow! “Let’s do it again, mommy”, your kids say as they watch the magic of a color changing volcano unfold.
Most kids have seen and participated in traditional volcano eruption kids activities but most haven’t seen a color changing volcano activity. It’s so easy to take two colors and let the volcano change to the mixed colors.
This is a low or no cost activity that my kids enjoy doing. They both like pouring and water play and you can use whatever equipment you have.
This activity is great for when you have no energy left, and you just want the kids to keep themselves busy for a few minutes.
Sensory activities, like soap foam bins, are some of my kids’ favorite activities to play with.
They love pouring and scooping, and this activity adds the ocean theme which makes it even more fun.
You can add any color or figurines to the soap foam to change it up. You can do it themed according to the holidays or your kids’ favorite animals.
Ice Ice baby! Ice is interesting for kids to transfer and in this activity they will do just that - use tongs or laddles to transport ice from water to another bin.
Sensory bins are sure to keep my kids busy for a while so that I can get a short break. This ice and water sensory bin is so easy to setup and doesn't require too many supplies. You just need to make sure you have ice in the freezer. Add the ice and water to a bin inside a bigger bin, add utensils and bowls and invite your kids to play. This activity is great for warmer weather but can be done indoor as well.
I like this activity because it involves kid’s large muscles in a gross motor activity and it is also educational, teaching them colours.
You just draw large coloured circles on concrete, or you can use DIY sidewalk paint. Then your kids can hop around the colours of their choice or the colours you call out. Either way, you and they can have a lot of fun with this easy kids activity.
This activity takes painting to the next level, by using kitchen tools as paint brushes.
A potato masher would make awesome prints if paired with paint and paper. And I wonder what a fork and cookie cutters would look like. Fun!