Wednesday, February 08, 2012

4 Hobbies to Start with Your Kids

Guest post by Erin Everhart

Every child needs some sort of activity to keep themselves preoccupied -- something away from the television, the video games, and, yes, even the smart phones and tablets. But you can’t just hope they stumble upon something themselves because, more likely than not, they won’t end up getting interested in anything. So to prevent them from not doing anything at all, here’s a list of 4 hobbies perfect for your little tykes.

Start collecting

I know what you’re thinking: Do I really want to encourage my kids to stockpile even more things for their bedroom? But there’s a key difference between acquiring and collecting: One gives them stuff to play with that will eventually be discarded and the latter starts piquing their interest in something to teach them money management, taking care of things, and maybe even a history lesson or two.

Whitman Publishing is a good source for the beginning collector and has some great supplies for coin collecting and stamp collecting, from price guides, folders, and albums, to commemorative coins and stamps. (They also have a series of collecting kits specifically for kids.) You can also find some pretty great stuff -- no matter what they want to start collecting -- at flea markets, antique shows and garage sales that you may not be able to find anywhere else.

Make them musical

It’s hard to ignore the positive effects music has on children. It boosts their brain power by learning to read music, teaches them patience and confidence, and gets them involved in a social activity. All of those things carry over to their day-to-day schoolwork, too.

Piano is one of the best instruments for children because it teaches them the basic principles that can be carried over to any instrument (for instance, treble and bass clef), how to read music, and multitasking since you’re doing different things with each hand.

Family Corner has a great list of musical instruments you can make with your kids if you want to keep costs low.

Get them outside

With today’s media overload, it’s harder and harder to get your kids out of the house and into the great outdoors. Set aside an hour every Saturday and Sunday that they have to unplug and unwind by doing something outside. But don’t just leave them to their own devices: Use this time to get outside with them. Whether you’re using that time exploring, bike riding, fishing or playing sports, they’ll get to experience different things while getting out of the house.

Involve them in sports

Get your kids involved with many different sports so they can decide for themselves what they like. There’s a little league baseball team and ballet studio in practically every area now, so there’s no excuse why they can’t be involved in something outside of school. Some great sports for kids are baseball, soccer, basketball, and tennis. Tip: If you have boys and girls, find something that’s not gender exclusive so you involve them together.

What are some other hobbies you can start with your kids?

About the Author

Erin Everhart is a writer and director of web and social media marketing at 352 Media Group.


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