Outdoor play and nature play are so important for children. However, one thing us adults are generally not so good at, is encouraging them outdoors in the rain. Children love the rain, on the whole, and love to play in the rain. For one reason or another though, us more “sensible” grown ups have a habit of teaching them to be averse to rain through our own example of behaviour. As long as they have the right clothing there is so much fun to be had with playing in the rain. They see and experience that it is different from a dry day. They are exhilarated out playing in the rain, and could teach us more weather averse adults a thing or two about having fun in the rain. I have written more specifically about autumn outdoor play ideas. I have also written about more age related outdoor play ideas for toddlers, pre schoolers, children, and teenagers. This post is going to look at why playing in the rain is beneficial, and some ideas to start you off. Children are 100% washable, and can be towel dried 😉 So go on, get them out there!!
Why Playing In The Rain Is Beneficial:
- It helps with a child’s motor skills and balance ability. The are now investigating, exploring, and enjoying a slippery world. This has a different set of physical challenges from a dry world.
- When they are playing in rain it helps them connect with all the weathers nature has. This helps improve their general connection they have with nature.
- They are exposed to a different sensory experience. There are so many new sights, sounds, smells, touches, and possibly tastes (depending on your child), to be experienced.
- They are learning. More specifically they are learning about water through their chosen method of playing in it. Never underestimate how much they learn through their play.
- They are being more physically active by being outdoors on a rainy day, reaping the all the physical health benefits that come with outdoor play.
- They learn to look after themselves in these different weather conditions. They learn to care for their clothing and protection, as well as anything they are using out in the rain.
Activity Ideas For Playing In The Rain:
Free and unstructured play is always the best, but here are a few starter ideas if you are struggling. See where the play leads on from here 🙂
- Mud pies and mud kitchens are always better with rain water mixed in.
- Sing and dance in the rain.
- Play with toys in the puddles (obviously only ones that can withstand water!)
- Build a dam. Mine also like doing this on beaches.
- Race snails.
- Go puddle jumping.
- Make nature boats and then see if they float in the puddles.
- Catch raindrops on your tongue.
So, next time it’s raining and everyone is climbing the walls indoors and you are tearing your hair out, dress them up and put them out! If you have trouble encouraging them, you can always check out my tips, but you won’t regret getting everyone outdoors playing in the rain.