Last Updated on February 7, 2024 by Sarah McCubbin
Spring outdoor activities for kids are essential after a LONG winter of being mostly inside. This list of 101+ Low Prep ideas will give you tons of things to do…whether its a little cool and muddy or sunny and trending towards summer temps. Enjoy the great outdoors!
When we get outside in late winter and early spring, some of our first activities out there are very practical. Others are messy and creative. This checklist has 101+ Activities Sorted by Movement, Art, Gardening, Celebrating and More!
Spring Outdoor Activities for Kids & Preschoolers!
1. Find Animal Prints
Take a nature walk and look at the ground for animal prints. What do you see? Are those rabbit prints..or birds or deer? If you live in an area where can see lots of prints, you may want to pick up an animal print identification guide!
2. Find Seed Pods
Seed pods can appear nearly any time of year, but in the spring you can see pods on the trees or leftover from the fall. We have a giant Sweet Gum tree that leaves spikey balls all over the yard. They are everywhere. What kind of seed pods can you find where you live?
3. Jump in Puddles
Does this even need to go on a checklist? Ok maybe! But kids will do it anyway. Where do you find the best puddles. At the back of our property, there is a low area that fills with water in the winter and spring. The kids call it “the pond” or “the swamp” depending on the time of year. But its really only 8 inches deep. Its an amazing big puddle though and usually requires a full change of clothes!
- Make boot prints in the mud
Embrace the mud! Put on boots and go outside to see what kind of prints you can make in the spring. What if they walk like a duck? Can they make boot prints that look like flower petals?
- Play in the rain
Look outside…if the rain is coming down and there is no thunder and lightening, this is magic for kids. I remember going outside and being shin deep in puddles or standing under trees and shaking the leaves to make it all come down faster. Have a handy pile of towels ready and your kids will love this. Mine love this all the way up through middle school!
- Watch how water runoff follows the lay of the land
When the rain starts pouring, watch how “rivers” suddenly appear as the water runs off the yard. Following the path of least resistance, water will flow in a way that resembles actual rivers. This makes it easy to explain how rivers work. At our house, the “yard rivers” all lead to a ditch which goes down to the bottom of a hill and leads to a big creek. We use this to talk about geography, being mindful of what we pour on the ground and much more.
- Make a dam in the runoff to block the water
When these magical rivers appear, my younger kids love to make dams. They take piles of sticks and stones and make little walls across the driveway where our water runs. It is so exciting to see that water create a pool.
- Go out for a walk in the woods
Whether you live near a big forest or just a city park, going for a walk is an amazing opportunity to observe natures. What can you see? What trees and birds do you see? What sounds do you hear?
- Throw pebbles in a pond or creek
While you are out walking, be sure to stop and throw pebbles in the creek or pond. Better yet, try skipping rocks. It might be a good idea to bring flat stones with you if you don’t have many near the ponds you visit.
- Start seeds in cold frames
A cold frame is simply a structure and it can be very small that you can use to start seeds in. It acts like a mini greenhouse. So you can create a cold frame out of something as small as a milk. Jug. Simply drill some holes in the bottom. Cut the jug in half plant dirt inside and add some seats and water and close the jug back up with some duct tape. And you can take that jug and tuck it in a bed somewhere and it will create a greenhouse effect that will help those seeds sprout earlier than if you just planted them in the ground. This works great, especially for plants that are a little more cold tolerant because you can start them pretty early in late winter.
- Visit a Garden Supply Store
One of my favorite things to do in the spring is visit a garden supply store. You can even visit in late winter before it’s too early to plant. Kids. Love being able to look and seeds. Look at all kinds of plants that are growing there. Maybe pick out a few things to bring home. It’s just a great way to get inspiration. You can be inside and outside walking around. Some garden nurseries are really large and you can spend a good bit of time out there. Wondering around the shrubs and trees and through the greenhouses and just kind of imagining what you’re going to do in the spring.
- Plant seeds in the ground
Another activity is simply to plant seeds in the ground. Depending on where you live you could do this earlier or later. I live in Ohio so some of the earliest seeds we can put in the ground are in mid-March when we could start things like greens and peas outdoors. But another part to the country you could probably start earlier.
- Eat edible weeds
Ah, one of my favorite things to do in the spring with my kids is to show them some edible weeds that they can eat. Around here. We have dandelions that pop up before much of anything is growing in the garden. Every part of a dandelion is edible so it’s a great one to show kids. You can eat the flowers and the stems and the leaves and even the roots. Now dandelion are a little bit bitter but they are safe to eat. My only caution would be if you spray chemicals on your yard that perhaps you might want to eat out of another yard or at a park where they don’t spray.
- Feed grass to animals
Kids love to feed animals. So if you can find a petting zoo or a local person that has horses and goats then you can go feed them. Some grass and the kids will love this. Where we live. Our neighbors have farm animals and their fence shares our property line so my kids have always enjoyed walking back there to talk to the horses and goats and feed them handfuls of grass. This seems simple but kids are making all kinds of observations while they are up close to animals.
Another way to feed the animals might be to visit the zoo. Our zoo has the option to feed animals for something like $2 a cup and kids. Can you know get close to the animals and feed them for this very small fee.
- Make a bird feeder
There are a couple ways to make a bird feeder. You could go to the craft store and buy one. That’s pre-made that you then paint. You could actually make a bird feeder following simple plans. Or you could convert an old gourd into a bird feeder. Every couple of years we grow gourds for this purpose and there’s something very rustic about the whole idea of converting a gourd into a bird feeder. Anyway, you do it though. Kids will love it.
- Plant a garden
Spring is the perfect time to plant a garden. If possible, give your kids a small corner of the garden to be there very own. Let them pick out a few kinds of seeds that they will grow in their garden and let them start the process from start to finish. That means they can go out there with a hoe and help dig it up. They can add manure and work that in. And then they can plant the seeds or seedlings. If they are managing their own little garden. They are far more diligent and helping those plants to grow. They seem to be a lot more interested in watering and weeding when it’s their own.
- Plant flowers in pots
If you don’t have enough space for a full garden or even if you do, planting outdoor patio pots is a really easy activity. You only need a few seeds or a few started plants and a pot and some potting soil. And you can easily do this activity in 10 or 15 minutes. We usually keep our pots filled with soil from year to year and we just top them up every year as the soil sinks we add more and then we either let them plant seeds in them or go to the store and buy some already started plants.
- Dig for worms
Nothing is more exciting than digging for worms. I don’t know why this is true but kids love them. It’s even more fun if you have some chickens or ducks to feed them too. Worms are usually found in very rich soil. A great time to find worms if you don’t want to dig is to go outside after it is rained and look around your patios or sidewalks because worms often come up out of the soil after a heavy rain.
- Play badminton
Badminton is a really fun activity to play outside with kids in the spring. They actually sell sets designed for toddlers as well as the regular full adult size. Great thing about badminton is you don’t have to set up a net or have a great setup. You can play badminton just like you would toss a ball and tap the birdie back and forth. Of course you can buy a set with Annette as well, but kids will have a great time practicing their coordination. Badminton is great because the birdies do not travel as far as a ball and they are easy to see.
- Find a rainbow
Seems like the spring is full of lots of rainbows. After a rain on a sunny day, go outside and look around in the sky and see if you can find a rainbow. I love rainbows because they are reminder that god keeps his promises and we always talk about that after we look up in the sky and see one there.
- Make a rainbow with natural elements
A great way to get out in nature is to let your kids pick up different colored things they find in nature to make their own rainbow. That might mean they find somered or orange flowers…and yellow dandelions to make stripes of the rainbow and some green leaves for another. Don’t be afraid to improvise. If you can’t find every color of a normal rainbow, it’s totally fine to let them make a rainbow with colors that they can find. Maybe one stripe is made out of dark sticks and another is out of light sticks. Maybe one stripe is even made out of dark mulch. In the spring. I have roses that start to bloom before many of my annuals so I might end up with a rainbow that is pink roses, yellow dandelions, screen leaves and brown sticks. And that is completely fine.
- Draw with chalk on the patio
Who doesn’t? Love chalk? Drawing with chalk is a great way to get outside and have fun with your kids. They can practice drawing letters, making a hopscotch drawing a road for them to drive their little cars on and so much more. A set of chalk is inexpensive and a great way to include people of all ages in fun outside.
- Make a kite
One school year some of my kids attended a local Waldorf school. One of the fun activities they did there was to actually make kites out of wooden dolls and lightweight fabric. Before assembling the kites, they had a chance to draw on their kite and make them their own. Then they assembled the kites and got to fly them on a windy day. It was a great experience. Many of us are used to flying the cheap plastic kites or maybe you have a nice one that you fly at the beach, but it’s really fun to start with just the basic supplies and see what you can come up with.
- Fly a kite
And after you have made a kite, it’s time to fly it. I think this is a great experimental process to see where a kite will actually fly. I found that you really need some wide open spaces, not just so you have room to run but so the kite doesn’t get caught in trees and so that though wind actually has a clear path to follow and doesn’t get knocked down by buildings and trees. We always try to fly kites the back of our property. We have a few acres so flying them. Seems logical there. However, in the back it has a big dip and there’s a hill and for whatever reason when the wind blows across that hill the heights really have a hard time flying. So we need to find a different place where there’s nice wide open spaces.
- Observe the natural color of eggs
Many of us grew up with white eggs and if it was super fancy we might find some brown eggs. But eggs come in many other colors and observing the different colors of eggs can be a really fun activity with kids. In addition to white and light brown chicken eggs come in really dark chocolate brown like green light blue and turquoise. If you can find a local farmer that has colorful eggs, pick up a dozen and let your kids look them over.
Recently our chicken started laying again and one of them laid in olive colored egg. My 4-year-old daughter was so perplexed. She knew we hadn’t died any Easter eggs but we had this very green looking egg. She kept asking me what was wrong with it. Of course nothing was wrong with it, but it was a fun chance to talk about how eggs come in different colors.
- Dye easter eggs
In addition to natural colored eggs, of course, it’s a great time to go ahead and die some. You can use natural dies if you want to experiment with those more muted colors or you can get really vibrant colors by using an egg dying kit or simply by using food coloring in vinegar water.
- Rent a Chicken
Have you always wanted to try raising chickens but didn’t want the expense or hassle of trying to get the full setup to get started? Did you know you can actually rent chickens? When you rent chickens it comes with a coop, chickens, food, the feeder and water and you can keep them for a few months. This is a great way to try out chickens and see if it’s a good fit for your family while experiencing the fun of collecting eggs in your own backyard.
- Hatch chicken eggs
If your kids have always wanted to see where chickens come from, you can actually hatch your own. You can rent an incubator and buy for life chicken eggs from a local farmer or hatchery or you can actually rent the full setup and it comes with everything.
- Buy baby chicks
If you’re ready to start raising chickens then by all means go ahead and buy some baby chicks. Spring is a great time to pick some up at the local farmer supply store where they usually sell them in the store. I will say that these chicks in the spring are usually a mix of male and female and you can’t choose one sex over the other. If you want to buy only hens then you’ll need to buy them from a local hatchery.
- Take close-up pictures of things in nature
Kids love to take pictures of things. You could give them a picture scavenger hunt to do and let them take pictures with their own camera or your phone. Or you could just turn them loose with the camera and ask them to take pictures of things that they love. Don’t be surprised if you find your own face in their pictures because kids love to take pictures of their parents.
Make gifts for Easter, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day
- Press flowers
As the flower start to bloom in the spring, this is a great time to press flowers. You can either pick flowers out of the garden or you can pick the little tiny flowers that come up in the yard or in the weeds to press. Simply take some newspaper, lay the flowers between paper and then lay the paper between heavy books and leave them for several weeks. Once you have pressed flowers you can use them to make greeting cards or to decorate prints or other artwork.
- Press leaves
Similarly, you can press leaves in the same way that you press flowers. A fun thing to do with leaves. If you are in a hurry is to get pieces of wax paper and put leaves between the wax paper and iron them. The leaves will be flattened and the wax paper creates a nice seal around the leaves. This is even more fun in the fall when the leaves are colorful.
- Paint with flowers
Have you ever tried painting with flowers? It can be a really interesting experience. All you need are a variety of flowers. Hopefully ones with different colors and some heavy card stock. Give your kids the flowers and instruct them to paint with them. That means they will press the flowers onto the paper to create patterns and textures. Mostly this is an observation and what colors actually come out of the flowers when they are used like a paintbrush.
- Paint rocks for the garden
My kids love to paint rocks for the garden. In order to do this, you’ll need some flat river rocks. You can of course collect these, but if you want to speed up the process you can buy bags of 2-3 inch river rocks at places like Lowe’s and home Depot pretty inexpensively. Then get out an old tablecloth or newspaper and some acrylic paints and let your kids go to town painting rocks. Of course, if you want to be very instructive you can help them make specific designs. But I found that my kids are happy to go at it alone. Word of caution. They will likely spill their paint so make sure you have them paint in a place that you are okay with spilled paint. One summer. My kids did this and they spilled bright green acrylic paint on my patio and for the rest of the summer we had remnants of bright green paint on the concrete.
- Make a garden path paver
Another great activity is to make a garden path. Paver. You can do this easily by buying a kit. It uses plaster of Paris and some decorative stones to
- Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day
Do St. Patrick’s Day traditions that you enjoy with your children? When my kids were little uneven still now that they’re not so little, we have a variety of ways we celebrate this day. After all, it’s nearly the end of winter. It’s a great excuse to do some fun things. Of course, the most practical outdoor idea is to go outside and look and see if you can find clover in your yard or the park. And can you find four-leaf clover. But beyond going outside and finding green things, our kids would often wake up on Saint Patrick’s Day to find that the toilet water had changed colors or that the milk in their cereal bowl would turn green. When when the cereal was poured for the milk was poured. So St. Patrick’s Day can be an easy one to do. Especially if the weather is good. You can get outside. Find as many green things as you can find some clover.
- Celebrate Mother’s Day
Celebrating Mother’s Day outside is a wonderful way to spend the day and how you use it should really depend on the mom in your life that you are celebrating. Our family usually has an outdoor BBQ. A visit to the plant nursery might be in order or perhaps a hike.
When my grandma was still here, her children used to go to her house and do yardwork and plant her flowers for her.
If you are blessed to have a mom or grandma in your life, spend the day in a way that they enjoy!
- Celebrate April Fool’s Day
Oh goodness…this day can be lots of fun! Whether your kids belonging’s go “missing’ and need to be found outside or whether you go for a walk in mismatched shoes, be silly and enjoy the craziness in life. Doing a scavenger hunt on this day with unexpected finds would be perfect!
- Celebrate Father’s Day
A good dad is something we should always celebrate. I’m so thankful for the men in my life who have led, provided for and cared for their families.
Similarly to Mother’s Day, its is a great idea from the dads in your life to take a que on what they would enjoy for Father’s Day.
Often our family will have an outdoor BBQ and spend time hanging out outside. Sometimes there is a hike involved and always there is family. If the dad in your life would enjoy a day at a ballgame..do that. If he would enjoy fishing at the lake…do that.
There are endless ways to spend time outdoors on Father’s Day.
- Do squirt painting
Some painting with small children can be a little stressful because they’re going to make a mess. We cover their good clothes with old clothes and we cover the tables with paper and we’re trying to prevent a mess. However, if we do the painting outside and we just wear old clothes then the mess isn’t really a problem and a great way to do this. Painting outside is to do squirt painting. Put some tempera paint and squirt bottles or some water down acrylic and squirt bottles.
I’d recommend tempra over the other. Go ahead and get a canvas or some heavy construction paper and lay it out in the grass and let the kids use a couple of different colors of squirt bottles to splatter the paint across there artwork. Of course they’re going to want to make more than one and that is fine. But this is easy. The paint splatter is part of the fun and it doesn’t take a lot of time. It is messy but it is outside and then you just simply hang up or lay them on the picnic table to dry.
- Have a squirt gun fight
Where by the end of spring, the weather is definitely warm enough to start some water fun. So I like to go to the Dollar tree and pick up some squirt guns in the spring. And when we get those really warm days, that’s a great time to bring up buckets so they can easily refill their guns and just let him have fun in the backyard.
- Use a water balloon launcher
Water to include the big kids in your fun. Think of a giant slingshot and adding water balloons to a giant slingshot. A water balloon launcher usually requires two people and they can go a very long way. So you will want to do this activity in some wide open space and not where your accidentally going to hit your neighbors. Three houses down with balloons that you’re launching from your yard.
- Celebrate Passover
A Passover Seder meal is the center of the Passover celebration. If it is warm enough in your area, have your Passover meal outside. Or…have part of it outside. In the Old Testament, when Passover originated, the Jewish people were commanded to apply the blood of a lamb to their doorposts.
If your family celebrates passover, consider doing a craft outdoors where they can “paint” a faux doorframe (maybe foam board) or cook unleavened bread over a fire. In the ancient world, most of their days would have been spent outside. Consider how you can cook over a fire or enjoy your Passover meal outside this year.
- Celebrate Easter
There are so many ways to celebrate Easter outside especially if the weather is good. You can attend an outdoor church service, go to an egg hunt, and or have a family picnic outside on Easter.
- Celebrate May Day
May Day is full of outdoor celebrations. Children can gather wildflowers and green branches or dance around a May pole. Having a bonfire outside can also be part of May Day celebrations!
- Pick a bouquet of flowers
Has topek out of the grass. This is a great time to pick bouquets of flowers. If the flowers are tiny, then use little mason jars as your vases or don’t use vases at all. Just use a thread of grass to tie them together, but picking flowers and identifying them is a really fun spring activity.
- Give someone flowers
And pick your flowers. Find someone to give them to. I am usually the recipient of countless handfuls of dandelions as my little kids love to pick them and then of course give them to me. So hope your kids find someone to give flowers to that. Will appreciate them that maybe your neighbor or grandma or just mom and dad.
- Make a flower garland
A as you walk around your yard, you may find that you have a lot of one kind of flower and something that’s fun to do with dandelions because they get a nice long stem is make a garland either like a crown for your head or to make a long necklace by braiding the stems together.
- Make a flower wreath
Similarly to making a crown or garland, you can make a flower wreath. Instead of hanging it on the wall, simply arrange it on a table as part of a centerpiece. This is simple for kids. If you want it to last longer than a few minutes, be sure to use branches, pine branches, and sturdier elements that will look nice beyond a few minutes. Of course you can add a vase of flowers to the middle too.
- Make mud pies
An in the yard is very wet. Little kids will often enjoy making mud pies. Some of the exploratory playgrounds in our area have mud pie kitchens. And those places kids can play with mud and they have pots and pans just like you would have in a toy kitchen in your house except for now they’ve got mud to do that with.
- Collect bugs in a jar
The My daughter found a beetle and she was so excited. She immediately put it in a jar and declared that she now had a pet. She was so excited to carry this jar around with her for part of the day and of course it was in a little mason jar so she could observe it and feed it and you know. Love on it and her 4-year-old way and I think these activities really help kids first of all, not be afraid of nature and also become more observant as they notice things about the different insects. Of course, later in the summer a more favorable insects to collect might be lightning bugs where kids collected bugs in a jar at night and get to watch the whole jar light up. It’s kind of magical.
- Find a caterpillar
Has Ride checking off your spring to do list. See if you can find a caterpillar. These appear often in later spring, but we found one in January when we were outside. So depending on your area caterpillars and of course butterflies are something that your kids can look for.
- Look at bugs under a handheld microscope
U handheld microscope and observe things outside. Let your kids put rocks under them or insects or flowers. Or you know observe the wood grain of a sliced log. Using these little microscopes can help them see tiny detail not visible with just our naked eye.
- Make a rock collection
Do near a park or an area with a lot of rocks. Then let your kids bake a rock collection. It doesn’t have to be filled with beautiful glittering semi-precious stones. It can simply be a collection of interesting rocks that they find in their yard or on a walk and that they collect together to remember the different places and times they spend outside.
- Look at the stars
Another going outside at night and looking at the stars. I actually think this is easier to do in the winter and early spring because the days are not as long at least here in Ohio and kids can get out there and you can see the different constellations that are visible in your area.
- Make a fire outside
The always love kids of all ages is when you make a fire outside. You can let them help collect sticks from your trees or from your yard clean up that you did and you can make a small fire outside. I found this is especially enjoyable in the evening because the light is you know it’s getting darker and you can enjoy the fire and everyone’s kind of winding down.
- Cook over the fire
Of course is also an amazing outside activity and obvious choice is roasting marshmallows but there are some really easy ways to cook savory foods over the fire like roasting potatoes or heating up. You know egg tortillas, things like that that are simple but obviously way more fun. If you do them over a fire and you backyard or at a park.
- Take a walk in the park
An thing to do is just to get outside and go for a walk in the park. Most people live near some kind of public park and the trails are often buried in length. So find a park that your kids can easily navigate or that you can use a stroller or wagon and just get out there and go for a walk.
- Make a fairy garden
No quite some magical is making a fairy garden. Horse you don’t have to believe in fairies or believe that fairies are real. To make a fairy garden. It can simply be like making a natural tiny doll house. If your kids have some little dolls then this is a easy way to repurpose them by making a little outdoor house for them using twigs and flowers and stones. If they don’t, then I highly recommend using little wooden pegs and make some little peg people as you’re fairies. That can be a great outdoor activity and peg people can be as simple or as elaborate as you would like them.
- Plant a tree
Some kind of exciting for kids to do is to plan to tree. You can get little starts from national arbor Day foundation for very inexpensive and while you have to protect them, it’s exciting to see how much they grow year over year. Or you can simply go to your local nursery and buy a tree there. Or you can go out in nature and find seedlings that have already started. We have red bud trees in our yard and baby red buds come up like weeds. They cost hundreds of dollars to buy a red bud tree at the plant nursery. But every spring we find quite a few just popped up in our flower beds like weeds and we have to decide whether we’re going to replace them or just get rid of them. So finding seedlings would already started and moving them into your yard is free.
- Grow a tree from seeds
Of if you don’t have any seedlings, you can start a tree from seeds. When the maples drop there seeds they come down like little helicopters and these seeds are so ready to grow. So if you need seeds to grow trees, just look around and see which trees are creating seed pods and go and plant those in some soil outside and see what happens. Of course you want to make sure those are regularly watered or you can even set the pot down in the soil so that it gets the benefit of. You know the natural watering process of your area and it doesn’t get dried out so easily.
- Clean out flower beds
Here practical idea and that is to clean out your flower beds. That can mean trimming your shrubs, raking out the leaves, picking up debris and pulling weeds from the previous year. Then of course once they’re clean you can go ahead and remoultry plant, but cleaning them out is the first step and can be done much earlier than actual planting.
- Create an obstacle course through the yard for your kids to race through.
Do active kids? Then you might want to create an obstacle course. These can be simple or elaborate and you can make them temporary or semi-permanent. Simply arrange things in your yard that your kids need to jump over, walk on, climb under swing from etc. In order in order to complete the course. This doesn’t have to cost any money and it doesn’t have to be permanent in order for it to be fun.
- Make sun tea
As a little warmer and sunnier. We love to make sun tea. Simply get a jar of water at least court jar. I would say and put several tea bags in it, screw on the lid and set it out in a sunny place outside depending on the temperature and how sunny it is. You’ll have tea that’s ready to drink within a few hours.
- Make sun wax art
You sun wax art by taking advantage of the heat from the sun. This is a great way to repurpose your crayons by laying them out on a dark piece of paper out in the sun and after the sun has warmed them, use the wax to create art on paper.
- Have a picnic at the park
On take a picnic to the park. If that feels like a lot of work then go to McDonalds or pick up a pizza and then go to the park. But somehow food just tastes better when you eat it out in the fresh air at a place that feels adventurous. This doesn’t have to be difficult.
- Visit a local farm
Kid farms. You can do this by checking out places that advertise as accepting visitors or you might simply visit a local farmer that sells eggs or has animals and just ask them if they can. You know show you their farm. They may not be an actual field trip location, but most people who have animals are delighted to share what they know with kids.
- Visit a local farmer’s market
On kids start happening. Take your kids to a local farmers market for the morning. Every time we’ve gone we’ve found really unusual fruits and vegetables as well as other interesting food that is made by locals. I found that my kids are more willing to try different foods if they have grown up themselves or picked it out themselves at something like a farmers market.
- Paint seashells
If or if you go on vacation to the beach, make sure you collect lots of seashells so that your kids can paint. Seashells. This can be you know a simple unstructured activity or with a little bit of intention. You can let them plan ahead and make seashell Christmas ornaments or other kinds of decorations like magnets that they can give as gifts.
- Ice cube painting
I when it’s warm outside and the ice cubes melt easily, it does require a little bit of planning. Simply take colored water by mixing in some temper paint or by using food coloring into the water and make ice cubes out of this colorful water and as they melt what the kids paint on card stock or just white paper and see what they come up with. This works the best with very intensely colored water because watercolors are always lighter to begin with and if you keep it a little brighter, it’s going to be easier to see.
- Go on a creek walk
It’s take your kids out for a creek walk. That can mean actually walking in a creek and letting them feel with that feels like. Or it can mean walking alongside Creek and seeing what they can discover. So he’s interesting to see what kind of rocks you see birds, minnows insects and other things. Just when you kind of get close to the water and kind of slow down. A great place to do this is that county Metro Parks or some of the national parks.
- Go fishing
Fishing can be a really exciting activity for kids even though it’s kind of slow at the same time. If you don’t have gear, many places will rent fishing gear. If they’re you know a bait shop or something near a lake or a river. So there are places you can go fishing without a huge investment. In our area. Kids do not need a fishing license, so that’s something to keep in mind. If you as the adult go that you may need a fishing license. Your kids might too depending on your area but just something to check into. Of course, if you are fishing on private property then none of that applies.
- Do a scavenger hunt
Fun is a scavenger hunt. This doesn’t have to be complicated. To create a scavenger hunt, you could simply walk around your own yard without your kids trying to make a quick list of things that you’re able to see in the spring and write them down on a piece of paper. Then you can either sketch out some pictures if they’re not readers or if they are readers, give them a list, send them outside with a bag and let them see if they can find everything on the list.
- Lay in a hammock
As warm up! Laying out in a hammock outside can be so relaxing and peaceful. You don’t have to have trees in your yard to have a hammock because there are many hammocks that come with just a simple stand. Our hammock is something we leave up and the warm weather and then we take it down in the fall.
- Make a fort outside
No making a fort outside. A fort can be something permanent or it can be something that is very temporary. Throwing blankets over a picnic table makes a great fort or setting up a tent outside. Makes a great fort. Of course these are temporary but kids don’t care. You can throw that up in just a few minutes and they can enjoy it for the day or few days.
- Feed ducks or fish at a local pond
In old bread gathered up in a bag and keep it in your freezer until you have a day when you can go out to feed the ducks. In our area. There is a pond where there’s always ducks and there is a local restaurant that has a pond that you can feed the ducks and I’m sure there’s plenty of other places. But when you’re ready to go out for a little adventure, grab your bag of old bread and let your kids feed the ducks and fish and it’s super fun.
- Have a car race (toddler car) If you have some of those little tykes type cars in your driveway then let your kids have a race. Maybe you ride one and they ride the other or two little toddlers race each other. Or if you live in the area where kids ride bikes in the street then what kids have a race on their bicycles.
- Do a foot race in your yard or at the park.
Kids love to race…especially if there is a chance they will win. You can change this up so many ways. Have the big kids crawl while the little ones run. Or have the big kids hop while the little ones run!
- Wash cars
On a warmer sunny day, get a bucket and sponges and wash the cars. It’s both productive and fun!
- Wash toys
Washing outdoor toys can be a great way to freshen things up. Make a list of things to clean and give the kids a bucket and scrub brush. Imagine how much better it is to play inside a little house that is clean and free of cobwebs. Going to the trouble to wash toys can also help declutter ones you no longer want to keep!
- Sweep the patios and porches
As I right this, my front porch has hundreds of spikey ball-shaped seed pods from the sweet gum tree all of over it. They drop in late fall and early winter so its actually part of the cleanup to get out there and sweep the porch. Sweeping is easy and helps everything look so much brighter. We also use leaf blower to blow a lot of debri off quickly!
- Wash the outdoor furniture
Do you have patio furniture that is looking dusty? Give the kids a bucket of soapy water and wipe down the picnic table, chairs, swings and more.
- Plant flowers in pots
Planting flowers in pots is so much easier than a full garden! And its a great project for kids because it is completed quickly and has a high satisfaction rate. Whether you started your plants from seed or you bought them at the local nursery, all you need is a pot, soil and plants. Kids love the whole process of setting up their own pot and you can bet that pot will be watered well all summer long!
- Pick Up Trash
One of the first activities we do on a nice day in the spring is to get outside and pick up trash. For whatever reason when the snow melts there is always an assortment of trash that fell out of a car or things that escaped in the wind or broken toys. So we go outside with trash bags and walk around yard and the property and pick up trash to clean things up.
- Clean Out the Cars
Along with picking up trash, everyone, including the little guys can pick up trash in the car. I usually assign one kid to pick up trash and other one to bring random laundry into the house. And of course, vacuum and finish cleaning…but if we can’t do it all, we do clean out the junk!
- Pick Up Sticks
In our yard we gather up sticks and take them to the burn pile. Kids can gather sticks in a bucket or fill a wheelbarrow. But picking up sticks is important in the spring in order to get the yard ready for mowing.
- Put Away Toys
Part of our spring cleaning routine is putting away random toys that have been left out in the yard and getting rid of toys that are broken or no one plays with. Kids can do this part of yard cleanup in a few minutes.
- Plan a party for friends
If you are ready to get out and enjoy spring, your kids probably are too! Why not have a party to celebrate a random holiday. It doesn’t have to be big or fancy.
This website has a holiday listed for every day of the year!
- Make a sun oven
Building a solar oven doesn’t have to be expensive or difficult. In fact, you can build one with a pizza box, foil, plastic wrap and a few other odds and ends. Your kids will love “baking” simple treats inside like yummy smores.
- Look for edibles in nature
Most of us are used to looking for food at the grocery store…but not necessarily in our own back yard. Yet there are many “weeds” that can be eaten for food. In addition to that,
- Pick berries
Depending on where you live, berries are likely available in the spring. In our area, we have strawberries in late spring but in other places the blackberries and blueberries are available in late spring too. You can plant some plants in your own yard if you want your kids to be able to forage or you can visit a berry picking farm!
- Eat from your garden
The easiest things to start in the early spring (or mid winter in the south) are things like greens, peas and brassicas. Greens and peas grow very quickly so you will be able to eat from your own garden before the spring is over. I encourage people to plant a variety of things in their gardens…not just normal things. Kids are much more likely to try weird foods if they grow them at home!
- Help a neighbor with yardwork
In the spirit of generosity, see if you can find a neighbor who can use some help with yardwork. Kids can help pick up sticks and clean out flower beds which can be a huge help to older neighbors or people busy with work or life.
- Compliment a neighbor’s yard/garden/animals etc.
If you are working down a checklist of things to do outside, an easy one to add in is teaching your kids how to genuinely appreciate other people. That can mean when you see a neighbor outside, that your kids practice noticing something they can appreciate. It can be simple. “I love these beautiful red flowers in your garden” or “You have the cutest dog.” If you want to work on this with your kids, practice ahead of time a few things they could say to compliment your neighbor. Learning how to notice other people and appreciate them is a huge life skill!
- Pick up trash in your neighborhood
One way to give back to your community is to pick up trash in the neighborhood. If you live where there are sidewalks, you can take your kids out for a walk and bring a bag along to collect trash. Make sure they wear gloves and of course don’t pick up sharp objects. But most of the time the trash that needs cleaned up is paper, cans and bottles which kids can easily do. Your neighbors will appreciate this and you can have great conversations about not littering.
- Take a card or plate of cookies to the neighbor.
Does your child love giving gifts. Let them make a card (using pressed flowers…or flower painting!) and deliver them to the neighbor.
Another fun spin on this is to make shortbread cookies with flower petals pressed into them! Be sure to use edible flowers but they make beautiful cookies!
- See how many steps you can walk in 10 minutes
Do you have a competitive child? If you have an extra step counter, put one on your child and see how many steps they take in 5 or 10 minutes. Repeat the experiment yourself or with another kiddo in the family. See who takes the most steps in 5 or 10 minutes!
- Put a thermometer outside to chart temperatures every day of the spring.
Temperatures vary wildly in the Spring. In Ohio, we can have snow all the way into May. Some years it is super warm in March and other years we are still getting lots of snow. Put a thermometer outside and keep track of the temperatures every day. Pick the same time every day to get the temperature and track it for 3 months!
- Eat out of your garden
If you start greens and peas in late winter or early spring, you should be able to eat from your garden before spring is over. My kids enjoy picking greens, radishes, strawberries and peas over the course of the spring. Of course if you live in a warmer part of the country, you can probaby pick a lot more than that!!
- Start a compost bin
Starting a compost bin is an easy outdoor activity. Whether you pick a corner of the yard to layer compost and leaves or you actually build a compost bin, starting a compost pile is a great (cheap) investment in your garden!
- Look for nests in trees.
Springtime is when many birds lay their eggs in nests. When you are out and about, look for nests. Sometimes they are in trees…but many times they are tucked into the eaves of houses or outbuildings.
- Get a bird identification guide
When you are out in nature, keep a bird identification guide handy. Use it to identify birds in your backyard or local parks. For even more fun, keep your camera handy and try to snap a few pictures.
Outdoor Spring Activities for Preschoolers & Kids Are Good For Everyone!
Whether your kids are 2 or 20, Spring is the perfect time to get out of the house and try new things. Incorporating the simple into the every day is the best way to slow down and enjoy your life! Happy Spring!
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