Ugh-its that dreaded summer phrase!!! My knee jerk response to “I’m bored”, is to send the kids outside. But, what do I do when it is too hot to safely get them to run around outside? I know I should have posted this this past Tuesday when it was so incredibly hot rather than today when it was quite cool on my way to work, but I am sure we will have the opportunity to use these ideas before summer’s end.
As a mom and a fitness leader, one of my goals, is to make sure that my kids are active, everyday, without exception!! Well, sickness certainly is one exception, but you know what I mean! I am very lucky to have kids that get along (more or less) on a regular basis and play well together. So, when I hear the “nattering”, as we call it, begin, I review what’s been going on the last hour or so. My first go to is of course to check the time and see if its snack time and hunger might be the cause. Once I have eliminated the hunger factor, the next thought I have is, how long have they been sitting? We have a “half an hour rule” when the kids are allowed to sit and watch T.V., play Wii (my son) or do crafts (my daughter) and once that half an hour is up, we need to get up and move! The more they sit, the more they fight. I notice the “nattering” behaviour stops quite quickly once their bodies are moving!
So, when it is horribly hot, like some of the days we have had this summer, how do we find an opportunity to move? I wanted to share a few of our favourites from the last week or so when we just couldn’t go out and run around.
1) “I Wanna Be a Rockstar” My kids love music so we will pick out a song together, and they set off choreographing a dance to this song. This usually consists of my gymnast daughter being upside down some how and my son air guitaring, air drumming or singing.
2) Balloon keep up. The length of time the kids will spend batting a balloon in the air amazes me. I always have an emergency package of balloons from the dollarstore hidden away and will blow a few up to bat around when the summer boredom hits! Safety note-this activity will best suit kids over three as a balloons pose a choking hazard for kids under three.
3) “Ham, chicken, cheese”. My daughter brought this one home from her fabulous grade 1 teacher this year. It can be adjusted depending on the space you have. On a clear floor, mark one line (we used a sock) as “ham”, the second line as “chicken” and the third one as “cheese”. The grown up then shouts “ham, chicken or cheese” which indicates which line the kids are to run to. You could ask the kids to crawl or hop rather than run if your space is limited.
Our bodies are meant to move, not sit. The research is mounting to show how hazardous sitting is to our health. Get your kids (and yourself moving) in any way you can!
Have fun! Here’s one of my favourite pics of my kids and me at the park after a family park “workout”-i.e. we ran around chasing each other and laughing! 🙂