The world is full of fun activities to do with your toddler-aged child. There are so many places to take them and so many ways to spend time with them. If you watch television or browse online, you will probably see a lot of fairly expensive options. There are fancy toys that you can get for them, or special classes you can take together that promise amazing results, but which always seem to cost a lot of money. There are indoor playgrounds that have neat equipment, but can also come with a steep admission price. Sometimes, your best and most enjoyable option is to spend some time outdoors with your little one. It’s fun, it’s skill-building and it’s easy on the wallet!
Visit a Playground
If you live in a residential area, chances are you aren’t very far away from a public school or a community park. Places like these often have playgrounds, which are known for being favourite places for kids to hang out, and which don’t cost a penny to use. Playgrounds provide physical exercise and can help little ones learn new skills like climbing, swinging and balancing. They also provide opportunities for social interaction, leading to new friendships for little ones and parents alike. When you’re visiting a playground, make sure your child is dressed for the weather—warm clothes if it’s cold, and sunscreen if it’s bright out.
Take a Nature Walk
Another cost-free outdoor activity for you and your child is the small but mighty adventure known as the nature walk. If there is a woodsy area, pond or field near your home that is safely accessible to the public, consider taking your kids there to take in the scenery and learn about nature. Keep your eyes open for teaching opportunities. Birds’ nests, butterflies and small animals may be fascinating to a child who has never seen them before… or to a parent who appreciates nature! Toddlers enjoy the chance to wander around in a new and vibrant place, and older kids love to interact with nature, even (especially?) the creepy-crawly side of it! Don’t forget to bring mosquito repellant and waterproof footgear, depending on where you’re going.
Check Out Your Community
Not all outdoor activities for parents and toddlers need to be for just you and your family. Many communities put on free or very inexpensive activities for children of all ages. These often involve games, crafts, songs and even field trips. Check your local library or community league for information on community-run programs for you and your toddler. You may be surprised by how many hidden gems are available for a very low price!
Don’t Be Afraid To Ask
If you’re not sure about new and fun activities for you and your toddler, ask around. Fellow parents may have great ideas. Child care and parenting professionals like the Pregnancy Care Centre can also be helpful. With a bit of persistence and creativity, you and your toddler can explore the great outdoors in a variety of fun, educational and affordable ways.