Getting outside and interacting with nature is easier than you think. We share three outdoor activities that you can do no matter where you are!
For many of us, the natural world was a playground of possibilities growing up. Even today, stopping to smell the flowers, pointing out birds as they fly overhead or jumping into a pile of leaves can conjure up feelings of nostalgia, laughter and joy. But as our lives get busier, finding the time and motivation to be active in nature can get harder to prioritize, especially for families. The good news is that no matter where your family lives – be it an urban jungle, rural countryside or somewhere in between – there are plenty of simple, flexible activities to get you and your kids outdoors.
At Boys & Girls Clubs, kids and teens participate in a variety of outdoor programs that drive STEM learning and nurture curiosity, leadership and other social-emotional skills. Our partnership with L.L.Bean fosters these opportunities by supporting Clubs in facilitating nature-inspired learning activities for youth of all ages with the Outdoor Social Recreation Playbook for Boys & Girls Clubs.
Take a page out of our playbook with three activities to get your family exploring, learning and playing out in nature, together.
Bird watching – or birding – is like real-life Pokémon Go! Whether you’re in a backyard or traveling somewhere new, birding allows youth to connect with wildlife around them as they try to “catch ‘em all” … Or rather, identify as many types of birds as possible.
Nature journaling allows you to record your observations, thoughts and feelings as you explore or relax in an outdoor setting. It also creates space for nurturing creativity, while grounding emotions and achieving mental clarity.
Designing and building bird feeders is a great way to welcome more birds and color into your outdoor spaces, and use up materials already on hand! The result is a beautiful decoration that simultaneously provides a food source for the local bird community – perfect for colder seasons.
When young people build outdoor recreation skills and healthy habits, they become present in the world around them with life skills that boost their emotional well-being and physical health.
Boys & Clubs provide safe places, caring mentors and life-enhancing programs that build youth confidence and contribute to an overall healthy physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. Sign up for our newsletter to receive the latest resources and stories from Boys & Girls Clubs of America.