- Family and Parenting
Old School Childhood vs. New School Childhood
Why Most Children Don't Play Outdoors as Much Anymore?
Back in the day, many children were "playing outdoors" as much as they could. Children in the 90's, 80's, 70's and before couldn't get enough of playing outside. During the "old school childhood," we would play from early morning all the way until the street lights came on. Some of you know what I'm saying, if you are from the same time frame. In the summer we would go swimming, and to recreational parks, we even climbed fruit from trees. We called it fruit hunting, of course we asked the house owners first before we got the fruit from their trees. Children back in the day, played outdoors for many hours; skating, biking, hopscotch, skate-boarding, spin the bottle, kick ball, singing nursery rhyme games, and other outdoor games. Kids during that old school child hood, seemed to have had a lot of fun playing outdoors, they really enjoyed their childhood.
Singing Nursery Rhymes
The "nursery rhymes" were taught by some of our parents and aunties. Songs such as: Ol Mary Mat, Your Mother My Mother Live Across the Street, and Down Down Baby, Down Down A Roller Coaster. You may know some of these "nursery rhymes" I've just mentioned and more. There are still some kids that like to play outdoors, but those are not added to the majority. Many children today are not into the style of playing outdoor games, or singing outdoor nursery rhymes such as Hokey-Pokey. The electronics and technology gadgets have many children's attention these days. Having computerized gadgets and video games such as Wii games, may be one reason why some children don't play outdoors as much anymore.
We know long hours of playing video games, and watching television, are not good for the health of any child. Being outdoors helps children to explore their imaginations and creativity, and helps proper cardiovascular function. Not only that, but children sleep better when they have participation in outdoor activities.
Tips - Play Safe Outdoors
Set a time each day for your child to play outside before dark. You could give them a mobile phone or walkie talkie to call them a couple of times. You could set up a "buddy system" to ensure that your child is always with another child. Ask a big sister, brother, or older child to help watch for risky areas.
Benefits of Children Playing Outdoors
Some parents agreed that on a nice day, their children would prefer to go to the park than watch television. We as parents have to initiate these outside activities, if the child won't go out to play. Children naturally like being physically active; and using their imaginations. Outside activities for children will also improve: stronger bones and muscles, lung function, risk of diabetes, risk heart disease, risk of stroke, and risk of high blood pressure.
Child and Parent Interact Together
One of the ways I get my children to play outdoors is; I take them to one of our local recreational parks while I do my exercise (walking around the park). They are playing with their razor scooters, playing on the swings and slide, etc. This way I can watch them as we are in the same vicinity. ♥ You can never be too care these days; children that are kidnapped is more common in this generation. ♥ Children being at risk of a kidnapping, is another reason why kids might not play outdoors as much anymore.
Furthermore, kids would use their outdoor toys more often, when an adult would interact with them. Parent and child can do many activities together. My father would play frisbee, and marbles, when we were younger. And my mom would play jump rope, and jacks with us outside. Personally, I think it’s therapeutic to interact with our children in outside games and activities. It benefits both the parent and child, plus it gives us a better bond with our children.
Old School Childhood Games
♦ Double Dutch
♦ Hide and Seek
♦ Dodge Ball
♦ Red light Green light
♦ Hop Scotch
♦ Hoola Hoop
♦ Chinese Jacks
♦ Practice Dance Steps
♦ Back-yard Drill Team
There were many more outside games, maybe you remember some of them as well. Feel free to leave your comment.
Double Dutch Jump Roping - watch this video
© 2011 Brinafr3sh