Technology benefits the world in so many ways, but oftentimes, it can also be detrimental. According to the U.S. Department of Health, the average American child now spends seven and a half hours a day staring at a screen.
Being physically inactive while consumed with a screen can have a huge impact on children and teenagers’ well-being.
If you’re a parent, then thinking of children’s entertainment options that don’t revolve around technology or screens is important. Providing them with opportunities to unplug aids their development in many ways.
But what sorts of children activities can you encourage them to do?
Keep reading to learn about seven fun activities for children that don’t require the use of any forms of technology.
1. Playing Outside
Whether you live in the countryside or the middle of a city, playing outside is almost always an option for children. Getting some fresh air provides them with a healthy and natural break from technology.
While you always want to ensure their safety, encourage them to play outside alone, with other children, or with a family pet. They can play games, practice for a sport, or just run around and burn off some energy.
If you live in an area where kids can’t play outside, consider taking them to a place where they can every once and a while. This can be somewhere like a park or a beach.
2. Playing Cards
Children and teenagers sometimes don’t realize that people have kept themselves entertained without technology for thousands of years. One of the ways that many people did that was by playing games like cards.
From solo games like solitaire to group games like Rummy 500 and Go Fish, there’s such an extent of card games that they can appeal to children of all ages and interests.
Of course, one of the best parts about cards is that they’re also portable. Bring them along on an airplane, to the park, or a restaurant.
3. Going for a Walk
The Chinese have a saying that translates to “If you take 100 steps after eating, you’ll live to 99.” Whether or not you believe that, it is true that everyone, and especially children, could benefit from walking more.
Take your kids for a walk around the neighborhood, go for a walk in the woods, or teach them how to walk the family dog. The goal is to get them outside and active.
If you walk with them, bring a phone for safety, but try to avoid looking at it or checking it. Make a point to enjoy each other’s company, as well as the world around you.
4. Cooking With the Family
Cooking is a life skill that many adults aren’t familiar with. Encouraging your children to help you cook will give them a break from looking into screens. It’ll also help them develop their own cooking skills.
While you can have them help you with anything, younger kids will love assisting with fun recipes. Cookies, cakes, and other baked goods are always a blast to make, as are meals like pizza.
Who knows—your child might discover that they enjoy cooking. Then, with a bit of practice, they might even offer to cook dinner for you once in a while.
Swimming is one of the best exercises as it works with all of your body’s major muscles. It’s also fun and provides children with another chance to get outside.
Public pools, backyard pools, and the beach can all provide children with the opportunity to swim. Just make sure that wherever they are, they’re safe.
To help your kids like swimming, make sure to get them in the water when they’re young. Swimming lessons can help with that, as can taking them to kiddie pools and other safe areas.
6. Drawing and Coloring
If your child enjoys art, then make sure to encourage them to tap into their artistic skills as often as possible. Unless they’re using a photo from the internet as a reference, this also lets them turn off their electronics.
Try giving them a topic and asking them to draw or color a relevant picture. You can also draw with them, coaching them throughout the process. Teach them to value the process, regardless of what the result looks like.
If your child enjoys coloring pictures, then encourage them to do that as well. You can provide them with dino coloring pages or other fun pictures that they need to complete.
7. Read Books
Reading books is one of the most important things that children can do. It helps them become strong writers, savvy, critical thinkers and lets them expand their imaginations.
Your goal should be to have your child read every day. If they’re really young, consider reading them to sleep. This will help prepare them for sleep while also ensuring that they don’t play on phones or tablets before bed.
Don’t forget that even in 2021, public libraries still exist. Skip the ebook, and instead plan a trip to the library each week with your child.
Understand the Importance of Technology-Free Children Entertainment
Tech and modern gadgets certainly have their benefits, but sometimes, the best thing you can do is unplug. If you have kids, make sure that you encourage them to enjoy technology-free children’s entertainment options from time to time.
In doing so, you’ll find that they are happier and healthier.
Did you learn about fun activities for children that you hadn’t thought of before? If you did, make sure to check out the rest of our site. You’ll find a ton of other helpful guides and tips.