If you’re like a lot of adults, your favorite childhood memories probably include swimming in lakes and building forts in your backyard. That’s less true for children today.
Only 6% of children ages 9 to 13 play outside on their own in a typical week, according to The Nature Conservancy. Among preschoolers, almost half aren’t taken outside by their parents for a walk or playtime each day, says a study published in the journal Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.
That same study found that the factors affecting outdoor play probably aren’t what you’d expect. Family income, neighborhood safety, and hours spent watching TV had little effect. What mattered was having plenty of playmates and parents who exercised regularly.
What can you do to help your kids spend more time outdoors? Take a look at these ideas for encouraging your children to go outside.
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