One of the struggles parents face today is keeping their kids entertained. It’s important to always keep them active to develop their brains and create good habits. Many parents resort to gadgets, but for parents who are on a budget, that may not always be an option.
Studies show that giving them a variety of tasks and activities help them create positive engagements with their peers. It also improves their verbal communication and makes them more social. As parents, these are traits you want to nurture.
Fortunately, there are a lot of ways you can keep your kids active without having to break the bank. There are a lot of things you can do that require little to no spending.
Take them to public libraries
Learning doesn’t end at school, and your kids can continue to learn through reading. If you can’t afford to keep getting them new books, you can borrow some from public libraries. What’s great about this is that you have a lot of variety and you can easily return a book once your children get tired of it.
Your kids are free to choose from a wide selection of books in public libraries. Freedom of choice also helps kids develop their personalities. Instead of imposing a standard book on them, they learn what is interesting to them and what is not.
Regularly borrowing books from public libraries does two things. One, it encourages them to read. Second, it teaches them how to be more responsible. They will learn how to take care of the books because they know that those books do not belong to them. Also, meeting the return dates is great for teaching them about time management.
Improve your yard
Regular exercise is one way you can keep your children mentally and physically healthy. Its benefits can also be seen well until they are teenagers. Research by the University College London saw depression scores decrease for every 60-minute light activity done.
As low-income parents, you may be juggling between multiple jobs, so chances are that you don’t have enough time to bring them to sports clubs. But they can still be active even in their own neighborhood.
Fixing the landscape of your yard to allow more open space will give them more room for physical activity. You can even incorporate a simple basketball hoop or a simple football net. They can play there on weekends or invite their friends over for a game. With this, you only need to invest in landscaping once, and they can keep using the yard for years to come.
Involve them in your daily tasks
Getting your children to do chores or clean up after themselves doesn’t have to be such a challenge. In fact, having your kids help out at an early age is a great way to teach them how to be responsible later in life.
The key to doing this is being patient with them. Whenever you’re cleaning the toys, you can ask them to help out and make a game out of it. You can give them simple tasks like throwing away trash or helping rinse out dishes. You’d be surprised at how enthusiastic toddlers can be about helping out their parents.
This helps them become more confident in themselves as well as gives them a sense of accomplishment. It also reinforces the idea of teamwork.
Take them out for a walk or hike
Nature is great for stimulating the minds of children. Travel at an early age doesn’t have to be an extravagant trip across the country. You can simply take them out to the local park or have a stroll in the nearby woods.
It is believed that being around nature can actually improve a child’s creativity, imagination, and mental acuity. At the same time, nature also reduces stress and boosts moods.
Being outdoors can also make them more curious about the world around them. They will see all the different birds and flowers, and this will make them more interested in nature. Early exposure to nature can also make them appreciate the environment better. It can make them more emphatic and concerned about plants and animals.
Have them help you cook
Cooking has a variety of benefits for children of all ages. Similar to involving them in chores, it teaches them how to look after themselves in the future.
More than that, it hones their skills and abilities in preparing their own food. There’s no age that is too early to start learning how to cook. This is an essential life skill that most don’t learn because they were never involved in the process or taught as kids.
Teaching kids to cook is also a great way to make them more adventurous eaters. It is one way that you can turn them into healthy eaters. You hit two birds with one stone by keeping them occupied while making healthy eating easier for you. They can have a better relationship with food because they understand the process that goes into it.
Just because you don’t have the money for expensive toys doesn’t mean that it will have a negative impact on your children. All you need to do is to look outside the box and discover all the ways your kids can be engaged without spending.