July is National Picnic Month! Take advantage of the good weather and get outside for some quality family time. Picnicking has many benefits, ranging from cutting back on screen time and encouraging closer family interactions to taking time to explore new healthy snacking recipes. If you have a garden at home, it’s also a time to take pride in what you’ve grown as you reap the benefits of going green! We have a few suggestions for making the most out of your picnic time:
1. Snacking Healthy
Picnic time is a great opportunity to instill healthy snacking habits in children as you enjoy the nice weather. Believe it or not, children adapt the behavior of parents and grandparents, so when they see you snacking healthy, they will want to do the same. A few ways to get little ones excited about healthy snacking include starting your own garden, making food preparation a work of art, and reading child-friendly books that encourage proper nutrition.
-An EarthBox is a great way to start your own garden, indoors or out! Teach children about responsibility through gardening and reap the benefits at the picnic table.
–Cooking Art is another great resource that will allow you to turn your kitchen into an art studio and enjoy snacking on creative snacks outside with the family.
-Finally, for a fun recipe to share with your family around the picnic table, find out how to make Yogurt Dipping Sauce and play the Veggie Game!
2. Encouraging Movement
Being outside for a picnic is also a great way to get kids moving before and after they snack. With so much energy to burn, children will love engaging in games of tag or exploring the terrain and insects around them! When preparing for your picnic, be sure to bring active options for children. Whether it’s a Frisbee, soccer ball, or kite, children love to get involved.
-One great option to set up beside your picnic is a Slackline! Challenge the whole family to see who can keep balance the longest!
3. Taking Time for Family.
Finally, picnics are the perfect time for focusing on the important things: each other. Take the time to set aside the smart phones, tablets, and Nintendos to talk about what happened during your day or how children feel about the approaching school year. Whether you are working on your child’s vocabulary by sharing stories or encouraging creativity by making shapes out of clouds, picnics will bring your family closer together and prove to be a valuable way to spend time.
For even more great ideas for outdoor time, check out our Pinterest board.