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Here’s another great article from our guest poster Maria Cannon. To read more from Maria, go check out her website here. It’s “Your Place for Hobbies”!

Do your kids spend their weekends staring at screens?

Well, you may be surprised to know that too much screen time can actually be bad for their health. That’s one of the reasons it is so important for children to spend time discovering new hobbies. More than just a way to burn time, hobbies can provide stress relief, help little minds develop and even be beneficial for their health. Need some ideas to get your kids started? Here are some hobbies guaranteed to get them away from those screens and having actual fun instead.

Make New Friends With Play and Sports

If your children are glued to the couch too much, it could have a major impact on their overall health. Studies show that teenagers these days tend to be less active than seniors, and that means more instances of obesity and related health issues. Keeping your children active, whether it’s by encouraging them to play or try a new sport, can help prevent some of those problems from becoming major issues. Play is also a great way for your kids to connect with other children their age, so try to schedule some play dates with friends or other families that you know. You can also encourage your child to get involved with organized sports. Basketball is a great sport for kids to try and keeps them moving the entire game. Before your kid hits the court, look online for the best basketball shoes that offer comfort while staying affordable.

 Connect with Nature and the Outdoors

Want to improve your child’s self-esteem and help them relieve stress? Get them to take their hobbies outside. Spending time outdoors can help children in several key ways. Kids who spend more time outside tend to have improved vision quality, better social skills, and more focus than those who do not. Exposure to sunlight can also increase vitamin D production, as well as decrease stress and feelings of depression. Wondering what hobbies you can do outside with your children? The possibilities are endless. You can start simple by planning some backyard bird watching, or you can teach them how to garden. If you are feeling adventurous, you could even take your family for some hikes or other excursions into nature. There are also scouting groups that can help your children develop a love of nature, as well as other essential life skills.

Unleash Their Creativity on Arts and Crafts

Did you know that the arts can aid development in your children? By practicing arts and crafts as a hobby, your kids are enhancing their fine motor skills, learning to make decisions and developing visual-spatial skills. The arts are also a fun and creative way for kids to explore other cultures. So encourage your children to put down their tablets and pick up a paintbrush or some clay instead. Visit a local arts and crafts store to pick up some basic art supplies, or look online for budget-friendly starter kits that have all budding Bob Rosses’ need. Children benefit the most from art when they have the space to create freely, so let them have fun and keep the experience positive from start to finish for everyone.

Boost Self-Esteem by Baking for Others

When you think of hobbies your kids might enjoy, you may not consider cooking and baking. Studies show, however, that baking for others can have some very positive impacts on self-esteem and mental health. Putting together a meal or baking a cake can help your children practice creative expression, an important element in nurturing positive mental health. You can get your children started by planning a family baking session. Select a kid-friendly recipe and try to keep things simple at first. Depending on your children’s ages and abilities, you may even want to pick up some kitchen equipment that can make the experience safer for little hands.

Kids need hobbies to keep them healthy. So, give your kids a break from those screens and encourage them to explore a new passion. Their bodies, minds, and health will thank you!

Photo Credit: Pixabay

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