I was ironing this morning and David was reading a book to Caroline. As part of reading the book, David said, “We’ll have to fly kites someday.” That got me to thinking about what other kinds of things Caroline should experience while she is a child.
Catch fireflies in a jar
Light sparklers on the Fourth of July
Build a snowman
Go to the beach
Play in a sandbox
Go to a baseball game
Ride a bike
Go to the zoo
What else should children do by the time they are ten? Obviously location will play a part in what is or is not possible. But, generally speaking, what childhood experiences should children have? I’ve only listed a few that are more play related, but educational and spiritual ideas are welcome, too!
Lindsey @ ETJ
My kids have done all of those, but our snowman building has always been paltry and pitiful! NC is the new Florida, it seems.
You know, some of our favorite “childhood things” are swimming, going for nature walks, having picnics outside or in the house on the floor, watching fireworks, catching tadpoles & fiddler crabs…I could come up with so much more!
It really is the simple things!
Jump in puddles
Kick through leaves
See a real fire
Walk in the woods
Attend Sunday School
Play on a bouncy castle!
Am sure there are loads more.
I totally agree with yours, Susanna’s and Lindsey’s…although we haven’t had enough snow yet in my 3 year old’s life to build a snowman, we made one with my 6 year old when she was very little though; oh and we don’t get fireflies round here 🙁
Climb a tree
Make a rope swing
Fall in love with a book or book series (mine were the Enid Blyton books: St Clare’s, Malory Towers, Enchanted Wood/Faraway Tree and the Wishing Chair and also the Anne of Green Gables series and The Children of Green Knowe.
Start reading the Bible on their own
Hopefully give their life to Jesus by their own decision
There are loads of things I hope my children can do or want to do, but no doubt they’ll decide they want to do none of these things…though I sincerely pray that they give their lives to Jesus!
Jump in the leaves
Roll down a hill
Lay on their backs and watch cloud pictures
Eat S’mores by a fire
Splash through puddles on a warm rainy day
Take Nature walks in the woods
Skip rocks in the water
Float branches or leaves down creek or river
Just to add a few more:) The list could go on and on…It’s making me nostalgic of my childhood. I have already done a lot of the things mentioned wioh my little boys but there are so many fun things to do!
Build a fort (even if it is just out of blankets)
Climb a tree
Take a family road trip
Learn to make cookies
Own her own Bible
Listen to a elderly relative’s childhood stories
Start a collection
Create an album of photographs she has taken
Have a treasure box
ashley @ twentysixcats
I think every child should learn how to swim. 🙂 To know their grandparents. To participate in service projects (ministering to those less fortunate.) To climb a tree. To go on hikes. To ride a bicycle. To play in the ocean. To be familiar with a library. To travel and see their country. To be friends with people different than them – other cultures, other skin colors, other languages, other physical abilities.
And for me specifically, I want my children to grow up with animals. To understand how to take care of another living creature, and to respect animals. That’s very, very important for me!
I second swimming! Every child should know how to swim and should have the opportunity to swim in lakes!
One educational thing I loved as a child was authoring books. I wrote/illustrated one “real” book every year in elementary school. You can buy an inexpensive hardbound blank book and after a few rough drafts, Caroline can create her own book complete with hand drawn illustrations. Just the other night at my parents’ home for dinner I showed all five of mine to my husband. He got a kick out of my “About the Author” pages.
I also second roll down a hill- what fun! Hide and Go Seek is wonderful too. Drawing with sidewalk chalk is always so much fun, as is hop scotch. Snow Angels!
I love how most of these activities are free or extremely affordable! What fun!
Whenever one of my children has a tumble off their bike or the swing or from just alot of fun play I alway say that no childhood is complete without a few cuts and bruises! They’re evidence of good, hardy playtime outdoors!
Wow, a brilliant subject, as usual!
Several ideas are wonderful, but not available where we live (fireflies, lighting sparklers, jumping in piles of leaves). I’ll substitute some that are more available to us:
Seeing a whale, a dolphin or a seal in the wild.
Taking a ride in a streetcar, a subway, a taxi, a train.
Skiing down a hill.
Growing something from a seed until it’s ripe enough to eat.
And some more things that were important when I was growing up, and I’d like my kids to witness or experience:
Going to a square dance or a country dance.
Picking up trash even when it’s not yours.
Riding a bicycle (often!)
Participating in a political rally or public demonstration.
Attending a funeral.
Sleeping in the backyard under the stars.
Performing an anonymous act of kindness.
Finally, this is a harsh thing to wish for, but I sense the value of surviving a tragedy or misfortune as a family. In my family growing up, it was a nearly-fatal accident accompanied by a very slow recovery. In my parenting experience so far, my kids and my husband and I have been extremely lucky in the main things: health, a place to live, enough money to live on. I guess what I hope for is that God will not send me a tragedy so great that I cannot bear it.
Your list had a strange affect on me, Sally. It caused me to remember the expectations I had as we first experienced these things together. My kids never reacted like I’d expected! I had quite a grin today as I remembered and I blogged about it, linking back to you. Here’s the post:
I would add to your list…barefoot in the morning dew. One my favs (and some of my kids too). 🙂
Living in Virginia, I hope my kids get that chance. We haven’t had angelworthy snow in a few years!
My childhood was sprinkled with amazing things. So here’s my list:
Visit at least one major US Art Gallery
Visit the Smithsonian
The Museum of Natural History in NYC
See a broadway play (matinee – like the Sound of Music?)
See the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (in person!)
Play in the surf of an Ocean and see the tide go in and out, jump the waves while you’re Daddy holds you! (this is primarily for little girls)
Read at least 1 of each; Charles Dickens & Jane Austen’s books
Spend part of one summer on a REAL farm
I can think of many other things, but this is a great start.
I guess I’m a bit of an oddball…I can’t think of any childhood activities that every child should experience. There’s stuff I think would be nice, but not a “has to”. The only one I can think of is for every child to be raised in a home where s/he’s loved and cared for by two parents, one of whom stays home to raise him/her up.