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The importance of children playing outside

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I am not a fan of the big outdoors. I am almost always cold or on the odd occasion too hot. I don’t like rain, wind, mud, puddles, nature in general.

I have discussed in my explanation of my vegetarianism that I don’t like animals. I don’t want them near me. But the second I step out of doors nature’s finest converge on me.
However, I do appreciate the beauty of our planet (as I hope my supermoon fixation earlier this year shows!) I love snow in particular and the way the whole world seems magical: I just don’t want to be out in in for longer than 15 minutes…

It is important for me to not pass on my idiosyncrasies to the children or restrict them in any way from developing a relationship with the world.
They love being outdoors. Walks anywhere take forever because every stick, stone and petal need to be extensively examined and sometimes carried home.
This week we finally got some sunshine after what feels like weeks of rain! My vertigo is still refusing to go so a walk wasn’t possible but we could make the most of being out in the garden:

I am always amazed that my children who frequently declare their need for more toys can be entertained for almost 2 solid hours with sticks. All 3 played in flower beds (no flowers, just shrubs!), they made dens, potions, epic battles. Zach also ate quite a bit of mud…
Once again nature conspired against me and I found a dead frog in the garden. I wanted to leave it for Chris to deal with when he got home but then remembered that I am a grown up myself. I found a trowel and dug a grave before burying the body. Moments later Matthew found the frogspawn elsewhere in the garden. I did leave that for Chris to re-locate!
Life and death.
Vital lessons for children but also for adults. The fragility of life, the appreciation of the present day, the enjoyment of simple pleasures. Imagination, hope and practicality.
Our world is a beautiful and terrible place. Nature is cruel and also creates joy.
Playing outside with adult supervision is essential for children to develop a healthy respect for the world that surrounds them, and helps with an understanding of the cycles of life that affects us all.

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18 comments

  1. Pingback: Global Blogging 55: Spring is in the air! | Musings of a tired mummy…zzz…

  2. I must admit that I’m not mad keen on being outdoors (hay fever is my worst enemy) but i do enjoy watching my kids playing outside. And I’m so with you- I often lewvenstuff for my husband to deal with tmforgetting that i too am a responsible adult! Hope your vertigo gets better soon! #globalblogging

  3. I love going outdoors but never on my own with Ben as our area isnt the safest and I get all panicky I cannot protect him. However, going to zoo’s, parks and just walking around makes Ben super happy and doing it as a family makes it a bit more special to me!
    #globalblogging

  4. Outdoor play was a lifesaver when my kids were little. They loved it (LOVED IT!) and all the mud and mess they brought inside was absolutely worth it because of the payoff of fitness and creativity that outdoor play fosters.

  5. I agree! Outdoor play is so vital. It’s great for their motor development, too, whether they are picking up sticks or bitty bugs, or running, climbing, jumping.

  6. I admire your willingness to put up with the outdoors for the sake of your children. You understand it’s importance not only for them to appreciate the world around them but to not pass on your dislike of it. I do the same thing with my kids in other areas. I love the outdoors but I am also picky about when I go outside and I actually force myself to go out when I don’t want to just to get my kids away from their electronics. #GlobalBlogging

  7. I’m similar to you here I think in that I’m not naturally an outdoorsy girl. I do have to force it for the kids and once I’m out in nature I do always enjoy it it’s just the initial idea of it and as you say so important for the to respect nature and the world around them #globalblogging

  8. I don’t know about any of that but for me there’s an important of being outside, even if it’s just reading on the deck or walking to the shops. There’s fresh air, and sounds and smells and a ‘peace’ that comes. #GlobalBlogging

  9. LOL that pic with your muddy shoes!! Hope your vertigo is better now. I have a love hate relationship with the outdoors, I enjoy being there but hate feeling cold. I also hate the mud and I’d be a terrible farmer. Kids seem to universally love it though so it is good to get them out at least. #Globalblogging

  10. I love the outdoors when it’s a bright and sunny day. Where I am, that is a rare occasion. Though I do feel guilty if the children don’t get to go out just coz I don’t like the weather. Thank you for reminding me to suck it up and go out with the kids even when the sun is hiding. ๐Ÿ™‚ #globalblogging

  11. I find that whenever I need a moment outside play is a lifesaver! My kids hate wearing shoes and often look like orphan Annie ๐Ÿ™‚ I couldn’t agree more! #globalblogging

  12. You’re right that being outside is so good for kids – and everyone else, I think. It’s not always that easy to get organised and actually go out, though! If you don’t have a garden (we don’t) it takes a bit more thought. Here it’s often too hot to go out at certain times of day. #globalblogging

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