Perhaps you remember playing outside all day – building forts, making up games, and exploring the backyard or neighborhood park with your friends – until you were called in for dinner. During the last 20 years, what used to be a childhood reality has changed. Today’s children spend less than half as much time playing outdoors as they used to. That boils down to less than 10 minutes per day during the week and less than 30 minutes on weekends, according to research from the University of Michigan.
It seems as if outdoor play time may have been overtaken by indoor screen time. The average child spends more than seven hours a day using electronic devices such as TVs, smart phones and computers. It’s time to take the family back outside. Here are five great ways to do it:
Think spring, and flowers immediately come to mind. From crocuses and pansies to tulips and lilacs, spring brings a bounty of color to our winter-weary lives.
Flowers are the inspiration, as well as the raw material, for some fun art projects. For example, you can use pressed flowers to personalize items such as cards, soaps and candles. You don’t even need a green thumb. A little patience and imagination will spring your creation to life.
These dried flower art projects will ensure your family has a “scentsational” spring:
It’s easy to go green at home by recycling, composting, and bringing your own bags to the grocery store, but once that the kids are off to school, maintaining earth-friendly habits can be a challenge. It’s important to follow the “Three Rs” philosophy both at home and at school: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. After all, 20 percent of Americans –more than 63 million people – attend school each day, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.
Many schools around the county are striving for better sustainability through solar power construction and rainwater collection. Even if your school hasn’t jumped on to the green bandwagon, these easy ways to go green will help to ensure that your family does its share:
Spring is one of the most beautiful and exhilarating times of the year. After the long, cold winter, green grass finally reappears and the flowers bloom once again. Spring is also one of the best seasons to spend quality time with your kids, whether outside or in the comfort of your home. One long-time favorite activity is making homemade bookmarks from pressed flowers.
We all know how important it is to do our part toward helping the environment. Recycling, buying locally produced foods, and watching energy use are all great actions that benefit the Earth. But there’s even more we can do. Environmental volunteerism provides ways for nature lovers of all ages to help keep our world healthy, meet others with similar interests, and reap the many physical and mental benefits that volunteering has to offer.