Keeping Children Physically Active

ANA asked you to share your favourite activity to get children physically active and away from screens over the holidays. Congratulations to Vanessa May, the winner of the  book “Bright Ideas for Young Minds.”

Vanessa has shared a simple yet effective idea which we love. “We have made a Christmas tree outline with green masking tape on the floor, the kids have loved doing gymnastics practice, balancing, hopscotch and kangaroo jumps. They’ve spent ages coming up with new ideas of how to play on it! “

Thanks to all the people who shared ideas. With this hot weather, many of the suggestions were fun, outdoor, water based activities.

We really liked the following ideas and hope they give you some inspiration for fun activities to get children active and away from screens in 2018.

  • Pretend you are in the jungle and have a dinosaur hunt in the backyard, hide small toy dinosaurs or pictures around the garden like an Easter egg hunt. (Samantha Bennett)
  • A scavenger hunt with a non-food treat at the end such as a voucher that says, “You have won a trip to the beach” (Helen Norrish)
  • I use our wonderful mountain – Mount Taranaki. For children 5 years and under there is a beautiful walk up to Wilkies Pools, through native bush with peeks at the mountain top on the way. We take a picnic lunch and have it by the pools. As a challenge for the 6-10 year olds we walk up to the Puakai hut and have lunch at the hut. It is a good 2 hour walk up hill but a race down back to the car. For a special treat, we leave at 3pm and cook our dinner and stay the night in the hut. No TV and  no cell phone coverage. (Jill Nicholls)
  • Make popcorn and dance as the popcorn pops, pretending you are a piece of popcorn. (Lynda Wilson)
  • Go exploring for things. We love to explore tracks and rivers and find things along our way. (Erika Maifea)
  • Bug hunting, climbing trees and pretending to be an animal. (Qa-t-a Amun)
  • Make tin can stilts out of cans and strings. (Gabby Byrne)
  • Search the beach for different shells and  use the shells to decorate a flowerpot. (Rowan MacLeod)

Link to the ANA book review on Bright Ideas for Young Minds