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Old Jul 3rd, 2018, 12:54 PM   1
SarahBear
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Kicking the kids out of the house aka outside time.


It is summer break and I don't work in the summer. My husband doesn't work at all. Preschool is out and my daughter has a week off from her summer school readiness program. One day when my husband and I were feeling particularly low on energy and not up for the usual morning time playing with the kids, we got the idea of instituing a mandatory outside time. Our kids typically don't get enough outside time and our oldest has always been highly reliant on others to entertain her. So when energy starts bubbling up around 9:00 to 10:00ish, we now send them outside. They are 5 and 3 and we live on a 1/3 acre lot that has a large unmaintained gravel driveway, a small garden (in the american sense, not the Brittish) and several areas with woods and some grassy areas. We send them out and set the timer for an hour. I keep an eye through our large windows and keep a window open to hear them. When they open the door, I do address any needs, but keep it short and send them back out. And even though it's only an bour, they inevidebly choose on their own to go outside later in the day. I remember spending a lot of time playing out in nature when I was a kid and it seems that all that is needed to replicate that for my own kids is to kick them out and disengage, forcing them to figure things out for themselves. Do any of you do anything similar? We have only been doing this a few days.



 
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Old Jul 3rd, 2018, 13:21 PM   2
krissie328
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Oh yea! My son has been playing outside by himself for a little over a year (turned 4 today). He is very predictable in his play and I often check on him. If it's morning time I'm usually outside with him but not necessarily playing just doing yardwork or in the garden.



 
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Old Jul 4th, 2018, 16:42 PM   3
Babybump87
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Me !
I have my back door open at all times if I am in the house . DD2 plays outside by herself while DD1 is in school the. Afterwards they both play out together until itís bedtime ! They have been having picnics outside and snacks etc with their toys.

We have have fences garden with trees and bushes so they cannot go anywhere. They pop into the kitchen for more drinks / snacks and go back out to play !

Iím dreading the winter months not being able to let them out , itís so good for them to have some free time to run and play .



 
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Old Jul 5th, 2018, 02:42 AM   4
kellyc1987
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I wish I could do this!

My lo won't go in the garden on his own or stay out there & play, even if I leave the door open or do the washing up (the window above the sink looks out to the garden)

Our garden is secure and he couldn't get out so I'd like to try and implement this, any tips??



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Old Jul 5th, 2018, 05:07 AM   5
LoraLoo
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My kids are out all the time. We dont have set times but on weekends, after school and school holidays they spend the majority of the time either outdoors on just playing in the garden.



 
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Old Jul 5th, 2018, 09:50 AM   6
Twag
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My children are always outside and even at pre-school they spend majourity of their time playing outside - winter months & rain are always a nightmare as they then feel like caged animals!



 
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Old Jul 5th, 2018, 11:25 AM   7
loeylo
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I donít think mandatory anything is necessarily a good thing.

I spent pretty much my entire childhood outside - we lived in a safe, residential street with a lot of nice kids close in age, and we all just took off as a troupe, pets in tow. We would be gone literally all day, however none of it was ďmandatoryĒ

I mean, dd goes out to play every day. And I mean every day - none of this mollycoddling not letting her out if itís rainy/snowy/blowing a gale. She usually spends at least 30 minutes in the garden several times a day, as well as lots of trips to the park and such.

Iím a teacher so Iím home all summer too and tbh I just want to spend time with her. Getting her out of my hair for an hour a day isnít something I want to do - they are only little for a short period. I always remember that the days are long but the years are short.



 
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Old Jul 6th, 2018, 18:10 PM   8
SarahBear
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kellyc1987 View Post
I wish I could do this!

My lo won't go in the garden on his own or stay out there & play, even if I leave the door open or do the washing up (the window above the sink looks out to the garden)

Our garden is secure and he couldn't get out so I'd like to try and implement this, any tips??
We didn't do this when Violet would have ended up having to go out alone. Now Leo is old enough to be a good playmate. Implementation is simple. We explained to the kids the expectations and why we were doing it. Then we enforced it. It doesn't matter how much they complained or try to come inside. We briefly address any needs and then send them out. We sometimes list off things they could do or provide materials for ideas they have, but ultimately, it's up to them to decide how to use the time and if they will be bored or find things to do. Another thing I'd suggest is that an hour is a good length of time for a resistant kid. The first day, my kids complained and tried to come inside for 15 minutes... and by a half hour, they were just getting into an activity and by an hour, they were so into their activity that they stayed out for extra time in order to finish it up. We took a break from this since my husband and I went camping without the kids, but we will get back to it at home. They do say they hate it, but it just seems so important! My oldest in particular needs to learn how to entertain herself and interact with peers without constant adult interaction.



 
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Old Jul 8th, 2018, 06:43 AM   9
MrsMurphy2Be
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I wouldn't force them to stay outside for an hour. My girls are in and out whenever they please, but I think it's cruel to stop them at the door and not allow them in if they want in, for the sole reason you think it's good for them.
You say you did it because you and your husband didn't feel up for playing in the morning, maybe the kids didn't feel up for spending an hour outside. You never forced yourself to play with the kids so it seems like you forced them outside to get them out of your face, which I believe is wrong, as much as they do drive us crazy sometimes!

Ps it is our summer holidays too, but I definitely couldn't shut my girls outside. I make the effort to take them out, or put up with them being hyper, even if I don't feel 'up for it' because that's a sacrifice parents have to make.



 
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Old Jul 9th, 2018, 10:55 AM   10
CRWx
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I wouldn’t force them to stay outside either, my DD is in the garden multiple times a day (I leave the doors open) when we are at home. When she’s had enough, she comes inside and plays in the house. I wouldn’t stop her at the door and make her stay outside because she simply might not want to and that to me is absolutely fine. Stopping her from coming in would feel cruel.

I can’t imagine ‘enforcing’ that my DD MUST do anything regarding play- staying outside even if she didn’t want to would take the fun out of it and I’d feel horrible. If she wants to play somewhere, great! I’m not going to force her though, seems very regimented, strict and honestly not a nice way to treat them!



 
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