decorate their creations with foods, such as birdseed or nuts, that will attract wildlife.
Ice skate on a frozen pond. Catch some fish. Take older kids to a trout park Friday through Sunday for catch-and-release fly fishing. The cold weather keeps crowds thin, providing the perfect opportunity for beginning fly anglers to hone their skills. For information on winter trout fishing, visit the links listed below.
Just get outside—your kids will know what to do. end of main article
New Kids' Magazine
Want more ideas to entice your kids outside? Try Xplor, the Department’s new kids’ magazine. Jam-packed with eye-popping art, photos and stories about Missouri’s coolest critters, niftiest natural places and fun things to do in nature, Xplor is sure to pull your child off the couch and out the door. This free bimonthly magazine will hit mailboxes in February. Don’t miss a single issue, subscribe today through the link listed below.
Tips for a Successful Experience
Stay flexible. Nothing ever goes according to plan with kids in the mix. So, be ready to throw out the plan. Though you headed to the pond to fish, your preschooler might rather throw rocks. Go with it. The objective is to have fun.
Adapt to your child’s age. Most ideas listed in this article work for a wide range of ages, but some are better for a particular age group than others. For example, your high schoolers will likely roll their eyes if you suggest a woolly bear race, but may love the idea of going on a float trip.
Dress appropriately. It’s tough for kids to appreciate nature when they’re cold, wet and miserable.
Pack a go-bag. Keep a daypack stocked with extra clothes, water, sunscreen, bug repellent, binoculars, field guides and a small first aid kit. This way, it will always be ready to go when nature beckons.
Station a treasure chest by the front door. Get in the habit of having your kids empty their pockets into a “treasure chest” (i.e. old shoe box) as soon as they come inside. This ensures no mud balls or woolly worms end up in the wash.
Participate. Believe it or not, your kids look up to you. By participating in their adventures you show them that being outside is important and that you value spending time with them.
For more tips, things to do and information on the benefits of getting your kids outside, visit the links listed below for the National Wildlife Federation’s Green Hour campaign or the Children and Nature Network.