Exploring the Backyard

Exploring the Backyard

A child’s mind is always active, and they are constantly seeking new wonders and adventures.  Children are natural explorers, and there is so much to do and see in your own backyard.  Keep in mind that extravagant vacations to exotic places are not necessary, in order to fulfill a child’s never-ending need to see all that the world has to offer.

Fun in the Garden

Your own backyard is a great place for your children and their friends to be occupied for hours.  Some great ideas include:

  1. Have the children go on a spider web hunt.
  2. Make a crown made from leaves, or even have them design their own place setting made of leaves, that they can use for the evening meal.
  3. Rock painting is becoming a fast enjoying trend.  Rocks can be found in your own backyard, and once painted; they could be hidden in secret places around the community to be found by others.  This is a great way to keep children occupied, and bring a smile to the face of strangers.
  4. Growing vegetables is a great way to teach children about food and nature.  Growing a sweet potato is something that could be done above ground, so children can experience the wonders of all stages of growth.
  5. Attempting to catch butterflies with a home-made butterfly net is a great way to get children to create something of their own, and also to appreciate nature.
  6. To tap into their imaginary side, encourage children to make a fairy garden, or build a tiny house for fairies.  Also, they can whip up a batch of fairy potion with a few household items, such as a jar, water, flower petals (or other items from the backyard), food coloring, and of course a magic stick to stir the potion.
  7. Camping and stargazing in the backyard has been something that children have been doing for years, and this is a tried and true activity that children love.

Your backyard is going to the place to be, where you share your homemade large games with the neighborhood.  Remember, building the game is half the fun.

Yard Twister

You will need some string to make sure your lines are straight, but more importantly, you will need spray paint cans of blue, yellow, green and red.  A 5 gallon bucket with the bottom (about a 10 inch circumference) cut out is recommended for the pattern template.  It is strongly advised, to allow the paint to dry before playing, to keep children from ruining clothes and shoes (or tracking wet paint into your house).   Use the spinner from the original game, if you don’t have one, just call out random combinations and watch the fun unfold.

DIY a Lawn Tic-Tac-Toe set

For the board, you can use spray paint, pool noodles, chalk, or use rope or yarn for the lines on the board.  Then you will need the “X” and “O” (5 of each) – these can be anything, like painted rocks, bean bags, or large handmade cutouts.

DIY Giant Backyard Bowling 

PVC pipes can be used to create this great, larger than life backyard game, but you can also use some common household products, such a large plastic soda bottles (filled with water with food coloring added), empty cereal boxes, or empty paper towel tubes filled with rocks (tape both ends of the filled tubes).

Giant Jenga

To create this fun game, you will just need a few 2’ by 4’ boards.  Most home improvement stores and lumber yards will cut the wood to your specific lengths, so you don’t even need a saw!