Backyard activities for toddlers so you can keep them busy and have yourself a nice cup of coffee while they play.
For small children who need to get their wiggles out, being cooped up indoors is stressful. That’s why we’ve compiled a fantastic list of fun outdoor activities for kids that promote movement, creativity, problem-solving, coordination, and so much more!
These outdoor activities are not only entertaining for the kids, but they are also instructive and beneficial to their physical and mental health. Don’t forget to get outside in the rain too!
You may undertake these things in your own backyard, on a neighbourhood stroll, or on a nature trail—the choice is yours. Even if you just have a little outside space for a play area, there are plenty of ways to spend time with the kids in the fresh air.
I like messy play in the warm weather, and in the summer my kids have a bath on a daily basis but this list of activities doesn’t have too many messy play options.
Here are my favorite backyard activities for toddlers, and there is no rule that says older kids can’t enjoy these activities.
Backyard Activities For Toddlers
Water Table Play
Water play is my #1 toddler activity. Here are some fun water table activities if you need ideas, and my favorite water tables for kids. Water table play is an easy way to get those sensory needs addressed and obviously it’s so much fun. My 8 year old still loves our toddler water table!
If you don’t want to buy a water table, you can use a large plastic container filled with warm water as a fun outdoor activity. Remember that you can add toy cars, soap, sidewalk chalk paint or whatever else you want to in your water table!
For youngsters who have outgrown their water table days, a water wall is a terrific and inexpensive DIY outdoor play area concept. With a few two-by-fours, chicken wire, and plastic pipes, you can make your own DIY water wall.
Ride Balance Bike
Does your toddler have a balance bike? It’s a great way to teach balance and keep your little one occupied in a fenced area.
Play In Sandbox
Sandboxes in the backyard may be enjoyed by children as young as one year old. Sand play, in fact, can benefit children’s growth. They learn critical motor and muscular skills, as well as hand-eye coordination, by excavating, filling, pouring, and moving sand using scoops and buckets.
Make a Bird Feeder
Make an easy bird feeder with your kids. This keeps the mess outside, and gives a little snack for the birds that visit your yard!
Small Splash Pad and Umbrella
What could be better for a child than outdoor water fun? A splash pad is fantastic since it is easy to maintain and is less expensive than a pool. The addition of a great stand-alone umbrella is the icing on the cake.
Paint and Draw
Do you have an easel for your kids? Take it outside! The same toy from inside the home can be a lot of fun if brought into the backyard.
With this Colors of Nature Scavenger Hunt, go on a stroll (or into your yard or garden) and encourage youngsters to identify and match colours. It’s a great method to improve colour awareness while getting some exercise.
Squirt Gun Painting
This Squirt Gun Painting activity is a lot of fun for the kids. Each painting will be one-of-a-kind, and who doesn’t like the chance to use a squirt gun?
Mud pies are a popular kid’s activity that has been passed down through the centuries. You should also try it with your children! Set up a Mud Kitchen project for your kids outside with some old pots, pans, and dishes. They can make mud pies, swirl flowers and leaves in water, and do a variety of other activities.
Make An Obstacle Course
Use hula hoops, skipping ropes, cardboard boxes, balls, and kiddie pools to create an obstacle course in your garden.
Make some art with Nature Paintbrushes fashioned from flowers, leaves, grass, and other found objects. It’ll be fun to experiment with different textures and patterns.
Giant Water Beads
You may use standard or large water beads like these to play with. They’re both a lot of fun. For a fun sensory experience, place them in a water table or a kiddie pool.
This is an obvious choice. For most kids, bubbles are wonderful and entertaining. They also offer the best value for money when it comes to establishing a kid-friendly backyard.
We’ve tried a variety of wands, machines, and bubbles, and they’re all incredibly popular. Even our own beaded bubble wands have been manufactured!
Larger multi-bubble wands and an endless supply of homemade bubble solution in a pie dish or shallow bowl (making a huge batch is simple and inexpensive) are our favourites.
Get Slimy Outside with Oobleck
Oobleck is the most fantastic, magnificent thing, and it only requires TWO components to manufacture. And I’m sure you have them already.
Cornstarch and water are mixed to make oobleck, a non-Newtonian material. It’s quite solid. It’s like a liquid. And really fantastic.
Rock Climbing Wall
Climbing walls are a fantastic method for older kids to strengthen their upper bodies while also letting off steam. You may buy a ready-made rock wall or build your own, but always make sure your kids have a secure place to fall.
Sponge Water Bombs
These Sponge Water Bombs are a simple and enjoyable way to cool yourself on hot summer days. It only takes a few minutes to build them, and then you can have a water battle with your family.
Bug Scavenger Hunt
This Bug Scavenger Hunt will be a hit with kids who enjoy all things creepy and crawly. Check off as many as you can on the list! This is a fantastic springtime exercise.
Painting with Water
Do you have a whiteboard on one side of your easel? Take it outside, cover it with chalk, and let the kids try their hand at Water Painting. If you don’t have a blackboard, let the kids use water to paint the fence, sidewalk, driveway, or porch. It’s a low-maintenance pastime that gives children plenty of fine motor work.
Play With Backyard Toys
Balls, hula hoops, frisbees, jump ropes, and stilts are all classic childhood toys that are wonderful for easy, athletic fun. However, one of our favourites is a set of activity cones, which are great for open-ended active play since they can be utilised in so many different ways. They’re ideal for constructing obstacle courses, make-believe games, and races.
You might also want to consider a trampoline for your backyard. We have a tiny trampoline that lives inside in the winter and outside in the summer! I wish we had space for a large trampoline, but alas, our small backyard simply doesn’t allow it.
Swings are a terrific way to stay active while having fun and relaxing. They are also great for building equilibrium and balance. A swing set or a tree swing might be a great addition if you have the room.
Backyard Play For Toddlers Bottom Line
I hope you enjoyed this list of outdoor games and other great ideas for your messy little monster to enjoy this year.
Outdoor art, bubbles and water balloons are easy outdoor activities that promote physical activity and develop fine motor skills and gross motor skills too. My kids love imaginative play when they get outside and see their outdoor toys. Especially if we can’t get out to the local park and enjoy the monkey bars and big slides, these outside activities keep my kids entertained for hours, and provide a wonderful sensory experience as well.