We may have been lucky so far this summer, but during the holidays, a rainy day is sometimes unavoidable. And while we all know that showers or storms after a long dry spell are great for the environment, it can end up giving you and the kids a serious case of cabin fever. But instead of spending the day watching television, here are a few great green outdoor activities for rainy days that you can try with the kids.
Go for a walk
There’s a saying that goes “there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing”. Try embracing the rainy day look by grabbing your waterproof jacket, wellies and umbrella, and take the kids for a stroll outdoors. Jumping and splashing in puddles is one of the best outdoor activities for rainy days and is bound to be more fun than hiding away inside.
Make a waterslide
Summer rain is often warm and refreshing, so there’s no reason why you can’t have summer fun in the back garden whilst it’s raining. A long sheet of plastic stretched down the garden makes a perfect water slide, and during a shower, there’s no need to worry about a hose. All you need is your bathing suit and you and your kids can enjoy hours of fun outdoors in the rain.
Whilst you’re out enjoying the rain, why not take some photos to remember the experience? The summer sun can leave the world looking beautiful, but we rarely seem to appreciate nature while the rain is falling. Grab a waterproof camera and photograph all of your favourite things about
rainy days- cars driving through water, droplets on leaves, reflections in puddles, rainbows and clouds. The more you take, the more you’ll realise how much there is to see on a rainy day!
Warmer weather is always popular amongst campers, but camping in the rain can be even more of an adventure. Nothing beats the sound of rain against a tent as you snuggle down to go to sleep for the night, or stay up with the kids telling ghost stories. There are plenty of campsites across the UK in beautiful rural locations where you can try camping in the rain, or if you want to be more spontaneous, try camping out in the back garden.
Visit a pond
A visit to a local pond, lake or river can be a great day trip with the kids in the rain. Rivers usually become higher and faster flowing on rainy days, making them fascinating to watch and great for a game of “pooh sticks”. Ponds and lakes also look great with rain falling onto their surface, and ducks are always fun for young children to watch. The UK is also home to a number of beautiful waterfalls which make a great spot to visit on a rainy day.
Build a den
There’s no need to head straight home if the heavens open during a day in the park. Instead, see it as an opportunity to set the kids to work on a den to shelter from the rain. Branches, leaves and moss can all be gathered to make a shelter to hide in and spark their imagination. Try different designs and see which den works best, then pile in and ride out the storm!
Try surfing or body boarding
The sea can be mild over summer and autumn, regardless of weather. If you live near a beach that boasts great surf, why not head down and start enjoying the waves? Body boarding is a fun and inexpensive sport that both kids and adults can enjoy, or go a step further and try out your surfing skills. Rain barely effects you when you’re already in the sea, so long as the water is safe, so jump in and enjoy the beach without the usual summer crowds.
Showing children that it doesn’t have to be sunny to have fun outside is an important lesson for them to learn. Rain is necessary for plants to grow as well as providing us all with water to drink. By learning to enjoy the rain they should grow up with a greater awareness of the impact of the weather on our environment. It also helps to encourage kids to go out and get some exercise all year round, a healthy habit which should last them well into adulthood.
Image source: Sam Breach
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