playing outside in houston

In this day and age of computer games, children aren’t as likely to go out and play as much as they should in order to be active growing up.

Here are nine fun activities for them to enjoy and can be done right in your own backyard.

1) Cornhole

A specific version of the bean bag toss, this game doesn’t require the whole yard to play.

Two sets of bean bags and two platforms with a single hole are all that is needed. The concept is simple in trying to throw the bag through the hole or keep it on the board.

2) Frisbee Golf

While throwing the disc back and forth can be initially entertaining for children, try creating a variation of a golf course. Each hole can be a trash can, a box, or a marked spot. Then, it is just like a game of golf.

It can involve the whole yard and half of the fun is coming up with new hole locations.

3) Passing Practice Tarp

Find a tarp and cut out various hole shapes. Mark how much each hole is worth based on difficulty, then set the tarp up. The children can give their arms a workout while attempting to accumulate the most points.

4) Beanbag Tossing Course

There are a wide variations of the bean bag toss ranging from throwing them into buckets or onto ladders. If that is the case, turn it into a bean bag obstacle course with multiple locations. Then, each player gets a set number of tosses at each location and the most points win. Another format is a timed event where there must be a successful throw to advance to the next location.

5) Blanket Run

Grab some blankets and break into teams. One player per team sits on the blanket and the others grab the blanket and drag their teammate to the finish line before the other team does.

6) Steal the Bacon

Divide the players into two teams lined on opposing sides. Have each player on both teams count out a number from one on up, so that one player on each team has the same number.

Put an item – the “bacon” – in between the lines, then call out a number matching a player on each side. Those players then must grab the “bacon” and return to his line without getting tagged by the other player.

7) Flashlight Tag

This game gets played at night and is ideal if the backyard covered with potential hiding objects.

One player to be chosen as “it.” A location gets chosen as a safety zone. The player who is “it” gets the flashlight and is tasked with preventing everyone else from reaching zone by shining a light on them (in effect “tagging” them). The tagged players are out and the game ends everyone either making it to the safety zone or is out. Then, the first person who was tagged is “it” for the next round.

8) Scavenger Hunt

Grab a set of small items and make a list. Hide the items all around the backyard like an Easter egg hunt. Then, give the children the list and turn them loose on the backyard. It is straightforward and can be done multiple times involving different list items.

9) Backyard Obstacle Course

Set up an obstacle course and have the children run through it as fast and cleanly as possible. Obstacles can be going under a table, traversing a small balance beam, crabwalking, or slaloming through upright pin noodles. Those are just a few of hundreds of obstacle possibilities.



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