Giving kids chores is a great way to teach them responsibility. Outdoor chores offer even more opportunities for kids to learn and practice decision making. Here are the reasons to add outdoor chores to your child’s to-do list.
Appreciation for Nature
Working outside means learning more about nature, and that’s good for your kids. They will understand the work that goes into maintaining a yard and will gain knowledge on what is good for the environment. They will learn how ecosystems work and thrive as well as when to be aware of potential problems in their environment. Spending time outside is one of the best ways to both appreciate nature and reap the benefits it offers. Being outside means getting more vitamin D, improving memory, and stressing less. Plus, your kid’s outside chores will likely lead to better sleep.
It’s important for children to develop problem-solving skills and outdoor chores offer them the perfect opportunity to learn. Chores that involve the outdoors are affected by weather and require on-the-spot thinking to complete. A child who was told to mow the lawn may go outside the next day and find snow to shovel instead. It’s good for kids to face unexpected challenges so they can figure out how to move forward. Outdoor chores are also often more interesting than working indoors since there is an element of the unexpected involved.
With the unexpected comes risks, and that’s not a bad thing. Your child will learn risk assessment when doing outdoor chores and will be able to carry these skills into other areas of life. Distinguishing safety hazards such as ant mounds or tree stumps, ones that kids would need help with, from smaller hazards such as toys and dog poop, is basic risk assessment. While your child doesn’t need to try to use a stump grinder on their own, they can help dig up small roots with a shovel if old enough. It’s best when kids learn to set limits for themselves instead of always having someone else do it for them. This is how they learn, grow, and understand what is appropriate for their abilities.
Outdoor chores are a great way to get kids outside and teach them about nature and themselves. Don’t shy away from assigning outdoor chores to your kids, no matter their ages. The lessons are priceless, and your child will build confidence outdoors.