Picnic ‘Must Haves’ To Keep The Little Ones Engaged
Picnics are one of those things that might be quite likely of dying out as time goes on. The truth of the matter is that no matter what some, rather preachy, parents might think, getting a little dirty is good for a child but in terms of their mental enjoyment of the outdoors, and their exposure to a range of bacteria, both good and bad.
Something tricky about picnics, in a lot of cases, is ensuring that the kids you’re with stay engaged with what’s going on around them. They can tend to drift away from the world around them a little and get distracted by smaller things that aren’t that interesting or important.
In this article, we’re going to run through some great ideas and items to keep kids engaged while you’re out on a family picnic from sweet hampers to toys!
Active toys are, perhaps, the best way to get kids to be involved in nearly any activity. Kids are, so often, at their absolute happiest when they’re running around, screaming and shouting, with their friends and family.
We would advise taking some form of active toy with you to your next picnic, whether it’s something as simple as a soccer ball or a frisbee, or as complex as a modern, computerised version of a ball to play catch with, we’re sure they’ll have fun.
At the end of the day, the trick to keeping kids engaged with anything, picnics included, is to ensure that there’s something fun involved. This could be some level of play, and that’s where the active toys come into things! Whether your kids make their own game out of two sticks and a blade of grass, or if you introduce them to a playground favourite from your childhood, that sense of learning, wonder, and enjoyment is sure to bring more than a little joy to them.
A sweets hamper can be an utterly wonderful thing. There are many, many reasons why we love it, but sweet hampers, and especially kids sweet hampers, can be a wonderful way to bring attention to the core of the food at a picnic.
The thing that makes a lot of picnics quite tricky to manage is that all of the food can be too straightforward - it’s often something as simple as cheese sandwiches since they’re easy to make and easy to carry.
A sweet hamper, though, introduces the obvious bonus of treats into the equation, as well as a level of unpredictability. If you keep the contents of the sweet hamper a secret, you can greatly extend the amount of time that the hamper is enjoyed for.
Kids’ sweets can often be a little samey, meaning that kids can get bored, even with sweets! With a sweet hamper, though, there’s typically a wide variety of personalised choices available at the point of purchase, meaning that you can ensure the basket is replete with great options for your child.
A kids’ sweet hamper can be enjoyed for a fairly long time at a picnic ground, which makes the entire process of the picnic a little more enjoyable. We say this because you can introduce the hamper before eating, sharing a small treat. Then, you can have another immediately following the meal, followed by another treat midway through a game of some kind, and a final one during the car ride home.
Having kids absorb sugar and then immediately burn it off by running through a park is a great way to ensure that they are engaged in the here and now - they’ll be hyper focused on every detail around them, bringing a little joy to their little world.
Blankets can be a great way to bring some enjoyment and investment to a picnic. By this, we mean that personal blankets for any and all of the kids involved in the picnic can be bought quite cheaply, and having that sense of ownership can be brilliant for a young one.
This might sound a little silly, but making a game out of keeping the blankets clean and folding them up nicely is a great way to instill a lesson about cleanliness in little ones. They will often be very happy to comply with the idea of keeping their own space clean if they get a chance to ‘win’ at it - generating a game of it is a wonderfully efficient way to bring a sense of motivation to the fore.
Magnifying glasses are a really brilliant way to make sure that you can encourage curiosity in a young one while you’re out in a public space. Whether you’re in a park in the middle of the countryside or a park in the middle of the city, there are bound to be a few bugs strolling around. Encouraging your kids to use their magnifying glasses to hunt them down and see what they’re up to can be a really sweet way to watch your kids learn about the world around them.
You can expand this activity by adding a sense of documentation to it all. This could include encouraging your kids to draw and write about the miniature beasts that they find, fostering an interest in the mini world around them. At the end of the day, this is precisely what scientists did before the invention of small, portable cameras!
The one thing that we would encourage all parents and guardians to do is to make sure that the magnifying glasses are put away properly. It’s something that people don’t really appreciate, but a stray magnifying glass really can start a fire! Make sure that they’re put away whenever the little ones aren’t actively playing with them - that’s the best way to ensure that everyone’s safe.
We hope that this article has been able to share some insightful ideas about bringing some joy to a picnic for your kids. We’re sure that kids will love these ideas, and opting for one at your next picnic will help to ensure that they look forward to every picnic after that.