Date : October 5, 2020
It’s been a year of limited access to nature – whether it’s a 50km limit or a backyard bubble, free range nature play, wide-open spaces and greenery has been in short supply.
Parents and kids alike are craving the fresh air and unlimited resources they are accustomed to… The freedom to play and run. If you need alternative options, these nature play ideas are just what you are looking for!
How to do nature play if you’ve only got a balcony or courtyard?
Families living in apartments are currently faced with an additional challenge. On top of the current restrictions, children are limited to the courtyard sized backyard or balcony for their outdoor fun. However, that doesn’t mean they have to miss out completely. There are plenty of nature play ideas that are suitable for all types of living – including making gumnut owls!
Growing from seeds
Now is the perfect time to plant some seeds! Kids love getting involved and watching their very own plants grow from seeds, to sprouts and then finally into flowers. Not only do children have the opportunity to learn, they are also rewarded for their hard work.
Grow your own food
Similarly to growing flowers, growing your own food or herbs is also an option that doesn’t require much space at all. Herbs can be grown on your kitchen window sill if need be. You can enjoy homegrown herbs in your meals and the fresh herby aroma in your home. Or if you have a little one that loves cherry tomatoes, plant the vine in a nice pot on the balcony and have cherry tomatoes whenever you please.
This one requires zero work and can still be a lot of fun. Think of cloud watching but instead add counting birds and butterflies that are flying overhead. Talk about the different colours and sounds they make.
Most kids love getting muddy. It’s fun. It’s free. And it will create memories that they’ll have forever. Get some dirt, a clamshell or small kiddie pool and add water. This can be done on the patio or in the courtyard and is easy enough to clean off when they are finished.
If you have paint and craft supplies laying around, get the kids to find some sticks or leaves that have blown onto the balcony or around the courtyard and instead of finger painting, use sticks and leaves. It adds different textures, strokes and is a whole lot of fun.
Just because access to nature has been limited outside the home, doesn’t mean you have to miss out completely. There are so many easy nature play ideas that your kids will love!
Camper Kell is a camping and “things to do” blogger raising four free range little nature lovers. Kell helps little people embrace nature while while preserving our natural habitats for bush babies of the future.