Hunkering down during this time of social distancing can make you stir crazy, but thankfully the outdoors aren’t closed! The weather is finally starting to get warmer, so take your kids or your pets in the backyard and get some fresh air. Remember, if you are in a neighborhood, park or other shared outdoor space, maintain a 6 feet of distance from those outside your household to help prevent viral spread. Ready, set, go… 5 things to do in your backyard.

5 Things to Do in Your Backyard

Race or Play “Simon Says”

We all know your kids need to get the wiggles out, so play some fun games to get them moving, like “Simon Says,” “Mother May I” or tell them different ways to race across the yard (hop on one foot, walk backwards, etc.). When they get tired, they can pick out some races for the adults to do too, because we all know the nightly Netflix binges and stress eating aren’t doing us any favors.

Play with Sidewalk Chalk

Sidewalk chalk is a great way to spend some time outside, and it keeps the mess outside too. You can add a little education here by identifying colors with your littlest ones, practicing letters and numbers with the preschool set and doing addition or multiplication problems with your elementary kiddos. If you live in a neighborhood, you can also create inspiring messages or pictures on your driveway or sidewalk for those who might be walking by!

Catch Some Bugs

If you’re not too squeamish, you can find a new pet by catching bugs outside. There are tons of ants, rolly polly bugs and worms out there right now. Find a glass or plastic jar and poke holes in the lid to catch and inspect your new friends. You can use the internet to figure out which types of insects you’ve found, as well as count the number of legs or identify their body parts. Don’t forget to set them free once you’re done playing!

Pick a Bouquet

Some early plants are starting to bloom, and if you have some flowers you can stand to lose outside, it’s a great time to brighten up your home with a bouquet of flowers. Again, you can try using the internet to identify the types of plants and flowers in your yard, and older kids will enjoy learning about the different parts of a flower and how they work.

Work on Landscaping

This one might not be quite as fun for the kids, but it’s a great time to get yard work done. See if you can make a game out of it! Race to see who can pull the most weeds in five minutes. Rake up old leaves and debris from winter and guess how big the pile will be. You can even teach your older kids how to mow the lawn (that one sounds like a win-win for the future too). They might just end up playing in the dirt, but at least they’re getting fresh air, right?

Bonus Tip: Hike a Trail

As long as you keep your distance from others, why not try a trail walk? There are tons of great places to hike in the Greenfield area and Central Indiana, like Beckenholdt Park, Brandywine Park or Pennsy Trail here in Hancock County, or the many trails and parks in Indianapolis and beyond!