Illustrations: Claire Manning
1. Jump rope
This kid classic is great exercise and it improves coordination. Jump to a song, do double dutch or shake the rope on the ground and have your kid jump over it for a game of Snake in the Grass.
2. Go for family hikes
Research shows spending time in nature can improve your mood. Reap the benefits as a family and get the kids started hiking early on with short, easy trails.
3. Walk the dog
Take the dog for a walk as a family and keep your kids engaged by getting them to count cars, flowers, trees or houses they see.
4. Do yardwork
Little ones develop fine motor skills by digging in the dirt—plus it makes less work for you! Compete to see who can rake the biggest pile of leaves or pull the most weeds.
5. Play freeze tag
This schoolyard game is the perfect group activity to get everyone’s heart pumping. The rules are simple: When you’re tagged, you’re frozen like a statue until another player “unfreezes” you.
6. Make an obstacle course
Have them crawl under a row of chairs, toss stuffies into laundry baskets and jump over pillows. The possibilities are endless!
7. Have a dance party
Play your kids’ favourite songs and boogie down. Better yet, have a dance-off. The winner gets to be the DJ next round.
8. Start ‘Simon Says’
Use this party game to get moving. Focus on active commands, like jumping, running and crawling, then switch to let your kid be Simon.
9. Play animal charades
Take turns hopping like a bunny, galloping like a horse or walking like a crab, then guessing the animal.
10. Race against the clock
Time your kid doing mini challenges like retrieving toys or running upstairs. Have rewards ready!