When my mother would tell me to go outside, get some fresh air, and participate in some outdoor activities, that used to mean no computers, no tv, and no electronic gadgets of any kind. I suspect that most of us mean roughly the same when we tell our kids to get their heads out of a screen. We were definitely not expecting them to go outside willingly, as they have been in troves, to play the new game Pokémon Go.
Attitudes towards video gaming and the internet have changed a lot since we were kids, but even with our high levels of tolerance for electronic entertainment, there does seem to be something a little bit off about playing too much Pokémon Go. Especially after incidents such as two players falling off of a cliff because of their attachment to the screen.
Here are some great activities for your child to take up this summer that aren’t Pokémon Go.
Although it doesn’t usually appear on lists of kids’ all-time favourite sports, bowling can be a great activity in any season. It’s no track run, but it is a great way to stay physically active and healthy. Even more so in air-conditioned bowling alleys as temperatures soar to record heights this summer.
The deal gets even sweeter when you take a look at programs that give kids free bowling over the summer. Bowling is a great physical and social activity that’ll get your kids out and about without sending them off cliffs.
Activities at the Library
Yeah yeah, I’m not the first person to say this, but there’s so much to be discovered at your local library! If your kids are playing Pokémon Go, though, you can trick them into checking out some books. It’s no secret that local businesses are jumping on all of the opportunities that Pokémon Go affords, with promotional offers and Pokémon lures to attract customers.
Libraries across the country are also taking advantage of these marketing opportunities. This library director created badges based on the ones that players can earn in older Pokémon games. Except in this iteration, players earn badges by completing book and library related activities, rather than by battling Pokémon.
Playing a Musical Instrument
Pokémon Go is all about training to become the very best, like no one ever was. You can harness this pursuit of excellence and encourage your child to work at developing a difficult skill like playing a musical instrument. Try creating a badge system like that librarian and award badges for musical milestones, like graduating to a higher level method book or learning a new piece.
If you live in a rural area or you just don’t want to commit to a drive across town once a week, online music lessons are a great way to save time and money while working with a high-quality teacher.
Camping is the classic outdoor activity. It’s got everything from fresh air and jaw-dropping scenery to exhilarating hikes and exciting boating adventures. Plus, in this day and age, there’s the added benefit of little to no wifi or 4G. Your kids may not believe you now when you tell them that there was once a time when you couldn’t get the internet on your phone, but they’ll come around once they’re confronted with the “harsh reality” of device-free living for a few days. If you want to ease them into it, try setting up your own glampsite and explore the outdoors in style.
Take a Trip to the Zoo
Many Pokémon are based on real world animals. Everything from lions to tigers to bears are covered in the Pokémon pantheon. Some are obvious, such as the aptly named Squirtle, a water-blasting turtle Pokémon. Others are not so much. Encourage your child to figure out what Pokémon look like what animals and to learn more about those animals.