Outdoor Activities For Toddlers

 

Are you struggling to get your toddler to enjoy outdoor activities? Or maybe you’re just not sure what fun outdoor activities you can do with your toddler?

While indoor entertainment options may seem tempting, research shows that outdoor play is crucial for your child’s physical health, cognitive development, and emotional well-being. That is why, if the weather permits, head on outside and soak in some Vitamin D with your kids! 

In this blog post, I will be sharing some exciting and fun outdoor activities for toddlers that will keep them engaged and entertained while exploring the great outdoors.

 

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outdoor activities for toddlers

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From nature walks and scavenger hunts to gardening and water play, these ideas will provide your child with endless opportunities to learn and grow in the fresh air and sunshine. 

So, whether you’re a parent, caregiver, or teacher, read on for some outdoor activities ideas that will help you encourage your little ones to step outside and enjoy the benefits of outdoor play. 

Remember to always supervise your child during outdoor activities. These outdoor activities for toddlers provide a great opportunity for quality time and bonding while also promoting physical, cognitive, and emotional development.

Oh, and don’t forget to apply sunscreen (and bug spray if needed) before heading out!

 

TOP Outdoor Activities For Toddlers

NATURE WALKS

Nature walks are a fantastic way to get your toddler outside and explore the world around them. Encourage your child to look for different types of trees, flowers, and wildlife, and take the opportunity to teach them about the natural world.

You can also collect leaves, rocks, or other interesting objects along the way to make a nature collage or sensory bin when you get home. I also love the idea of pointing different things out in nature to encourage your toddler to talk and say more words.

To make the walk even more fun, consider packing a picnic and having a little outdoor snack break along the way.

 

Outdoor Activities for Kids - nature walk

SENSORY PLAY

Sensory play is a great way to engage your child’s senses and encourage exploration. Create a sensory bin by filling a plastic container with different materials like sand, water, or rice, and let your child play with it using their hands or other tools like scoops or shovels.

Like I mentioned before, you can also add natural elements like rocks, leaves, or flowers to provide even more sensory stimulation. This activity not only helps with fine motor skills but also promotes creativity and imagination.

WATER PLAY

Water play is a classic outdoor activity that is perfect for toddlers. Set up a small kiddie pool or water table in your backyard, and let your child splash around and explore.

You can also add different objects like cups, bowls, and toys to the water to create even more fun and opportunities for learning. 

I love doing this in the summer, because your kid gets to play, while you get to catch a tan and soak your feet. I would also search for free splash pads in your area.

We have a few that you need to pay for, but we also have a couple that are free. So, on a hot day, my son and I get there bright and early to play around at the splash pad before it gets busy.

It’s actually one of our favorite things to do together in the summer. So, not only is water play enjoyable, but it also helps with hand-eye coordination, gross motor skills, and sensory development.

CHALK ART

Chalk art is a fun and creative activity that can be done right in your driveway or sidewalk. Provide your child with a set of colorful chalks and let them go wild with their imagination, creating drawings, shapes, letters, and more.

You can even make a game out of it by drawing hopscotch or other games that your child can play. You can get a big bucket of sidewalk chat for fairly cheap, too.

A 72 count of the Crayola Washable Chalk is only $15! I love getting this as a gift for summer birthdays. 

Crayola Ultimate Washable Chalk Collection (64ct), Bulk Sidewalk Chalk, Outdoor Chalk for Kids, Anti-Roll Sticks, Nontoxic, 4+

GARDENING

Gardening is a great way to teach your toddler about nature and where our food comes from. You can start by planting simple vegetables like tomatoes, lettuce, or herbs in a raised bed or container garden.

Allow your child to help with watering, weeding, and harvesting, and let them taste the fruits (and vegetables) of their labor. This activity not only promotes healthy eating habits but also helps with hand-eye coordination and sensory development. 

I got this cute little garden set off of Amazon for my son, and he LOVES “gardening” next to his dad. The tools are honestly really good quality, and only $20 for the set of four

Play22 Kids Garden Tool Set Toy 4-Piece - Shovel, Rake, Hoe, Leaf Rake, Wooden Gardening Tools for Kids Best Outdoor Toys Gift for Boys and Girls

MAKE OBSTACLE COURSE

Creating an obstacle course in your backyard is a fun way to get your toddler moving and developing their gross motor skills.

Use everyday household objects like hula hoops, cones, and pillows to create a course that your child can crawl under, jump over, and weave through.

Use a timer on your phone to time them for an additional element of fun.

You can also add in some simple exercises like jumping jacks or squats to promote physical activity and burn off some energy. 

SCAVENGER HUNT

A scavenger hunt is a fun and interactive way to get your toddler outside and exploring their surroundings.

  • Create a list of items for your child to find, such as a red flower, a round rock, or a feather.
  • Then, encourage your child to search for the items and cross them off the list as they find them.

You can make it even more exciting by hiding some of the items around the backyard or park. I mentioned the nature walk, which would be a great time to add in a scavenger hunt.

BUBBLE PLAY

Bubbles are a classic outdoor activity that toddlers love. Fill a small kiddie pool or tray with soapy water and provide your child with a bubble wand or a bubble machine.

Encourage your child to chase and pop the bubbles, or even try to catch them in their hands.

This activity promotes hand-eye coordination, gross motor skills, and sensory development.

BALLOON TENNIS

Balloon tennis is a fun and easy game that can be played with just a few household items.

Blow up a balloon and provide your child with a plastic racket or a paper plate to use as a paddle.

Then, encourage them to hit the balloon back and forth, either with you or with a sibling.

This activity promotes hand-eye coordination and gross motor skills, while also providing a fun way to enjoy the outdoors.

BIRD WATCHING

Bird watching is a great way to introduce your child to nature and teach them about different bird species. Set up a bird feeder in your backyard and provide your child with a pair of binoculars or a bird guidebook.

Encourage them to observe and identify different birds that come to visit the feeder. You can even make it into a game by keeping a tally of how many birds your child sees and identifying which ones are the most common.

This activity promotes curiosity, observation skills, and appreciation for nature.

We got our child these cute binoculars to match ours. 

LET'S GO! Toys for 5-8 Year Old Boys, DIMY Compact Waterproof Binocular for Kids Hunting-Hiking Presents for Kids Best Easter Toys for 6-12 Year Old Boys Gifts Age 3-10 Blue

DO NATURE ART

Nature art is a fun and creative activity that allows your child to use their imagination and create something beautiful out of natural materials.

Take a nature walk and collect different objects like leaves, flowers, and twigs.

Then, provide your child with a large piece of paper and some glue, and encourage them to create a nature collage or artwork using the materials they collected.

This activity promotes creativity, fine motor skills, and appreciation for nature.

GO CAMPING

Camping is a great way to get your child excited about the outdoors and teach them basic survival skills. Set up a small tent in your backyard and let your child help with gathering supplies like sleeping bags, flashlights, and snacks.

You can even make s’mores over a campfire (with adult supervision) for a fun and delicious treat. This activity promotes independence, problem-solving skills, and appreciation for the outdoors.

TAKE A BIKE RIDE

Bike riding is a great way to get your toddler moving and enjoying the outdoors.

Set up a safe and secure bike route in your neighborhood or local park, and provide your child with a balance bike or tricycle.

Encourage them to pedal and explore their surroundings while also getting exercise and fresh air. This activity promotes gross motor skills, physical activity, and independence.

Outdoor Activities for Kids - bike ride

SAND PLAY

Sand play is a classic outdoor activity that toddlers love. Set up a sandbox in your backyard or local park and provide your child with sand toys like buckets, shovels, and molds.

Encourage your child to build sandcastles, dig trenches, and create shapes and patterns in the sand. This activity promotes fine motor skills, creativity, and sensory development.

Outdoor Activities for Kids - sand play

GO ON A PICNIC

A picnic is a fun and simple way to enjoy the outdoors with your toddler. Pack a basket with some sandwiches, fruits, and snacks, and find a cozy spot in your backyard or local park. Encourage your child to help with setting up the picnic blanket and arranging the food. This activity promotes social skills, communication, and appreciation for nature.

Overall, outdoor activities for toddlers are essential for their physical and mental development. By engaging in nature walks, sensory play, and water play, your child can explore and learn while having fun in the sun.

These activities also provide an opportunity for you to bond with your child and create lasting memories. So, get out there and enjoy the great outdoors with your little ones!

Outdoor Activities for Kids - picnic

FINAL THOUGHTS – Outdoor Activities For Toddlers

All of the activities above will not only keep your kid entertained, but are beneficial to them in some way. They’ll be learning, developing skills, and having a blast doing it!

About Morgan Wender

I’m a boy mom, dog mom, bee mom, lover of all things Disney, and lover of making the best out of this chaotic life of mine. I created this platform to share my life, and help normalize “big topic” motherhood issues. I hope you enjoy my mix of life, love, levity, and everything in between.Now that you know a little about me, I would love to know more about you! Find me over on Instagram, and shoot me a DM if you would like to chat!the journey

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Hi, I’m Morgan! I created this platform to be able to share my life, help normalize big topic motherhood issues, and help simplify all the things I learned the complicated way. I hope you enjoy my mix of life, love, levity, and everything in between

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