Spring is such a great time of year, it means it’s time to get back outside for some fun outdoor activities.
Check out this list of fun outdoor play ideas that are great for toddlers and preschoolers.
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Most of these outside activities do involve getting wet or messy so be prepared to hose your kids off after or do them on a bath day.
For any of these activities that involve water be sure to supervise your kids. Little kids can drown in just a few inches of water if they fall into a bucket or pool and get stuck.
1 – Sidewalk Foam
Sidewalk foam has been a big hit at our house since we started it two summers ago. Now that one of my daughters is a bit older she likes to help make the foam as well as use it!
It’s made from just a few ingredients: flour, water, shaving cream, and food coloring. So most of the items are already in your house. Then you’ll need a pack of squirt bottles and you’ll be ready to play!
Get the full instructions for making sidewalk foam.
2 – Play with Chalk
You can get large containers of chalk at Target, Michaels, or sometimes the Dollar store for relatively cheap…which is important these days when prices for everything are going up!
Kids can simply draw with it, they can make a hopscotch, they can practice letters and numbers. The possibilities are endless.
My kids like to use the back of our house and our fence as a canvas as well. Chalk cleans up easily so I let them use it all over.
If your kids are really into chalk you can even make your own homemade chalk!
3 – Squirt Gun clean up
Once they’re done with the chalk or sidewalk foam it’s time to clean up!
Give them squirt bottles or squirt guns with water or sponges and a bucket and let them help clean up the mess. Kids love using water so let them do it with a purpose.
4 – Make some soup
Nature soup that is! Give the kids a bucket of water and let them make soup out of dirt and items they find in the backyard.
This could also be a fun tie-in for the book stone soup. They can put a stone in and then add their own ingredients just like they do in the book.
5 – Make Mud Tacos or Pie
Making mud pies in the backyard is something we did a lot growing up. It’s cheap entertainment as it uses two things everyone already has, water and dirt.
You can also get some big leaves and create mud tacos. My grandma ate countless numbers of mud tacos when I was growing up and my kids love to make mud creations now.
6 – Car or Animal cleanup
Dirty things are just begging to be cleaned. Help your child set up their own car wash or animal wash.
You can either use toys that have already gotten a bit dirty in the backyard or purposefully dirty up some items.
Give your kids a tub of water and some sponges or brushes and let them clean them off, when they’re done it will be your turn to clean them up.
7 – Bubbles
I’ve yet to meet a kid that doesn’t love blowing and popping bubbles. Get different types of wands and have a blast.
You can also look up a recipe and create your own bubble mix…or grab some at the dollar store.
8 – Water table
A water table can be a great addition to your yard. You can usually find one on sale at the beginning of spring or summer. You can also check your local buy nothing group for one that someone else has outgrown.
It will keep your kids cool and entertained as the weather warms up.
You can also use water beads for an extra level of fun. Just be sure to supervise as water beads can be a choking hazard and I know my kids will always try to drink from the water table.
If you don’t want to purchase a water table you can use a big plastic container with water in it and give them old cups, scoops, and buckets to move the water around with.
9 – Play a game
If your kids are ready for something a little more organized or you have a group of kids consider playing a game. The outdoors is a great place for games that will help get the energy out and use/develop gross motor skills.