Outdoor Kids: Ideas to Get Kids Outside

Susie Busta // October 21

As a kid, I remember being outside all the time. Whether it be picking rocks on the farm, butchering chickens, helping Grandma with the garden, fishing, riding a bike, tending to animals, or exploring. TV was in limited amounts, and it seemed like we were always too busy doing something outdoors to have time to watch it.

Welcome to the 21st century. Where iPads, phones, and social media have taken over our lives. But not only ours, our children’s as well.

So how do you raise your kids to get involved in the outdoors?

While we aren’t perfect, we do strive to get our son outdoors as much as possible. My best suggestion for parents is to get their children started in the outdoors as soon as they are comfortable doing so. It doesn’t have to be just hunting and fishing; it can be everyday outdoor chores – just involve your child.

outdoor kids

Children who participate in outdoor activities at a young age are more likely to participate at an older age.

Here are a few ideas for raising an outdoor kid:

  • Hiking and park visits are a great start to getting kids into the outdoors and nature. Hiking and park visits allow children to see nature and explore. Some parks will even have educational programs and classes for children.  
  • Fishing (I love this one): Fishing was one of the first outdoor activities we did with our son. Be mindful of the temperature, sun, and elements. A good rule of thumb is to prepare for a long trip but expect a short one.
  • Hunting: While our son has only been hunting once, he does help us hang stands and look for deer signs. Ground blinds are great for starting out with small children. Toy bows can teach children the basics of bowhunting. Ear protection for gun hunting is a must.
  • Gardening: It's a great way to get your child not only outdoors, but also allow them to learn where food comes from. It also can help teach them a sense of responsibility. One idea is to allow them to plant their own section of the garden.
  • Mowing the lawn: We have a toy lawn mower that our son likes to follow us around with when we are push-mowing. He also loves sitting on the riding lawn mower. Ear protection is also a must and be mindful of where they are at while doing this. It is helpful to have a second person in the yard with you so they can keep an extra eye.

{{Read:: Outdoorsy Kids: 10 Ways to Get Your Kids Interested in the Outdoors}}

  • Treasure hunting: This is one of our son’s favorite activities to do when we are at the lake cabin. The “treasure guy” comes and leaves him a map showing where the treasure is outside. Finding the treasure is fun, but the prize is more exciting! 
  • Walking your pets: Another simple task you may do daily that you can involve your children in is walking the dog. Once they are older, allowing them to walk the dog can teach them responsibility.
  • Community programs: Some cities have community education programs in the summer (or throughout the year), and some are centered around the outdoors. Check your local school.

Remember no matter what you do when raising an outdoor kid, make it fun! Hope you enjoyed our ideas to get the kids outside.

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About the Author

Susie Busta

To sum it up - Wife, Mom, Hunter, Fisher, all-around outdoorsy woman!
I am a new Mom and I love involving our son in everything we do outdoors, watching him experience things for the first time is truly better than any trophy fish or animal. I also enjoy sharing my experiences with other outdoors mothers, in hopes we can learn from each other. Continuing your outdoor activities is not easy with a little one, tips and tricks come in handy! I try to be real with my experiences, all the ups and downs since we all have them and they make us human. I hope that by sharing my passion and stories of the outdoors it may spark another woman or mother to pursue something they didn’t think they could do.