Introduce Your Children To Nature

kids-outdoors-Kazz.0We think time spent outside is time well spent and the challenges faced while hiking, climbing, and camping can give you the skills and confidence to do bigger things in life. So if you love the outdoors too, we figure you want to make that a part of your children’s lives and help them get acquainted with all the Arkansas outdoors has to offer. Here’s some ideas to teach your kids about nature:

Identify Plants and Animals

Part of understanding nature is being able to put a name to things and understand how they work. We’ve got a ton of great guidebooks to Arkansas wildlife that can help but nothing replaces taking the time to talk with your kids about flowers, animals, and insects and the jobs they do in the world. Take along a guidebook to help you identify what you encounter when you’re outside and look them up together to find out about the plants and animals you encounter. It’s also a good idea to teach your children about what things to avoid, like poison ivy and how to act around wild animals.

Teach Trail Courtesy

Everyone else who’s enjoying the trails will thank you for well behaved children. While you can certainly be noisy and play outside, making sure you’re courteous to other users is important. Going over how to pass on a trail, trail maintenance, and cleaning up when you can will help your children understand and appreciate the outdoors. These actions will also help keep trails around for our future.

Volunteer and Meet Others

One of the best parts of the outdoors lifestyle is the community of people who enjoy the outdoors like you. Take your children to a cleanup day or out with a local hiking group. While you might lag behind a little, don’t stress when you can’t keep up. The idea is to get together with others and have a good time as much as you can at your own pace and teaching your children that going slow isn’t anything bad is a great endeavor. Caring for your favorite places by doing cleanups will also help instill in them a great sense of stewardship.

There are a ton of resources to introduce your children to the outdoors but just remember, if you find they’re uncomfortable with certain things, take it slow. Some kids love to climb and take to rock climbing easily whereas others might be completely petrified of scrambling high on rocks. Take time to get acquainted and help your children push themselves outside of their boundaries while still being safe.

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