Last Updated on June 15, 2023
Some games never get out of fashion. Many times when we are trying to come up with some ideas about what to do in the garden, we come back to our own childhood and remember some of the games that were the best fun back in the day. These activities are classics but can come in handy when you are looking for inspiration on what to do in the garden today. Spending time in the garden is great.
The fresh air, the sun, and being outside in nature is essential for a healthy mind and spirit for grownups and kids alike. The natural elements like leaves, flowers, and puddles stimulate children’s’ imagination and get them to interact with their environment. Many times it is the simple things in life that give kids the greatest joy. At other times, helping out a little with a few activity suggestions is the right way to go. Sometimes your child might be playing on their own so we thought it would be useful to write down some activities kids can do on their own as well as with friends and family.
- Hopscotch – The classic. Everybody knows and loves it. Depending on the age of your child there are variations to make the game easier or harder by making smaller or bigger squares or extending it.
- What you need: Chalk
- Bocce – Fun for all ages. If you have a bocce set, it is time to dust it off and teach this game to your kid. It promotes accuracy and patience and is great fun to play as a family. If you don’t have a bocce set, get creative, and use plastic balls from your ball pit instead.
- What you need: Bocce set or any sort of balls
- Chalk Bullseye – Chalk is the best. Chalk can be used for a thousand activities. This activity is fun and can teach your little one counting and addition skills. Draw different sized circles on the ground and get a small stone. The target is to throw the stone in the circle. You can either write different numbers of points in each circle or you could write a letter and every time a target is hit the child writes down a word starting with the letter they hit.
- What you need: Chalk and a small rock
- Jumping rope – Great workout. Have you recently tried using a skipping rope for more than a minute? I am telling you, it is tiring! Kids love it anyway which is why it is one of those classic activities that never get old. There are lots of jumps your child can practice like one-legged jumps, cross-jumps, backward- & forward jumps and you will be amazed how good your kid can get at it in a short time. Like any toy, jump ropes have versatile uses such as being a pretend lead for their dog teddy for example.
- What you need: jumping rope
- Obstacle Course – Active kids are happy kids. Creating an obstacle course outdoors is easier than you think and building it is half of the fun. Use whatever you have in your garden. Chairs, flower pots, rope, stones anything can be used to make an obstacle course. Include activities such as jumping, climbing, running, skipping, crawling to challenge your kids. You can also use chalk to draw arrows or write down challenges on some of the obstacles, such as ‘only jump on the red stones’.
- What you need: Anything you have in your garden to build obstacles
- Ring Toss game – Let them fly. Ring Toss is a game that is challenging and fun for children. Usually, you have a Ring Toss game set but you can also get creative and use things you have around the house. The game is played by throwing the rings so they land on one of the pegs. Sometimes different pegs can have different points. If you don’t have a Ring Toss game at home, you could use for example some large plastic rings you might have (they should have an about 10 cm diameter) or you can make rings yourself by following this guide. The pegs can be made from bottles that you place tightly together in a box so they don’t fall over when they get hit by the rings.
- What you need: Ring Toss Game or cardboard, tape, box, bottles
- Explore Nature – Let Your Inner Scientists Out. There are lots of fascinating things to explore in gardens. Your child could explore what different types of bugs they can find and for example try to count, draw or photograph them. Or take a close look at differently coloured and shaped leaves.
- What you need: Magnifying glass or binoculars.
- Shadow Drawing – Little Artists. This is a great activity for practising motor skills and using different types of art. For shadow drawings, your child chooses a few toys, places them on the ground and puts a piece of paper on the place where the toys shadow is. The shadow will show the shape of the toy, animals work best for this. Then, the child follows the outline of the shadow on the paper and after can colour it in in their favourite colours.
- What you need: Toy, a piece of paper and pencil.
- Bowling – Get It Rolling. It’s a classic. Sometimes I forget that what I know as a classic game my kids never played! Bowling is one of these games that can be great fun as well when you play it in your garden! The goal of bowling is to hit as many pins as possible with one roll of the ball.
- What you need: bowling pins (I like to use plastic bottles with a little water inside), a ball.
- Make Animal Shapes from Flowers – Get Creative with Your Environment. This was such a brilliant idea my hubby had the other day. It kept our little one busy for hours! We drew an animal shape with chalk on the ground and the project was to fill it in with flowers and outline it with rocks. We opted for daisies and buttercups. Since they are quite small it took a while to gather all of them but the result was beautiful and the kids were very proud of themselves. The picture is actually from our latest project, a cute cat.
- What you need: Chalk, grass, flowers, leaves, rocks.