Have the afternoon off? Why not take your kids outside and enjoy some outdoor games for toddlers? Toddlers love to play outside and engage in different outdoor activities, especially when they are around other children.
Some games can help improve the skills developed and enhance motor and cognitive growth. Walls limit your kids’ movement, so take the fun outside!
Here are some of the best outdoor games to try with your kids during outdoor playtime!
- 17 Outdoor Games for toddlers to Try
- #1 Musical Chairs – The Best Birthday Party Game
- #2 Treasure Hunt Boosts Problem Solving Skills
- #3 Pass the Ball for Future Athletes
- #4 Hula Hoop Improves Posture
- #5 Hide n Seek – Best of Easy Toddler Activities
- #6 Hopscotch Helps the Toddlers Learn to Count
- #7 Start with Basic Traffic Rules Early with Red Light, Green Light
- #8 Explore the Nature with Outdoor Hot n Cold
- #9 Homemade Soap Bubbles for an Ultimate Bubble Party
- #10 DIY Escape Room
- #11 Arcade Style DIY Ring Toss For the Whole Family
- #12 Art Activities for Exciting Picnics
- #13 Jump the River Exciting Games for Parties
- #14 Game of Tag for Perky Kids
- #15 Frisbee for Whole-Body Training
- #16 Tricycle Riding As Introduction to Bike Riding
- #17 Obstacle Course Aids Physical and Problem-Solving Skills
- Outdoor Playing Tips for Parents of Toddlers
17 Outdoor Games for toddlers to Try
The following list of fun outdoors game ideas ensure that your toddler has a great time when being outside and always ready to play!
#1 Musical Chairs – The Best Birthday Party Game
The Musical chairs game rules are simple and it is one of the outdoors group games that boosts confidence and competitive spirit in kids. You can play fun children’s songs and include the kids from the neighborhood.
Musical chairs are also one of the best games to play at indoor or outdoor birthday party occasions.
It will increase the vigilance and concentration in toddlers, as they will be concentrated to sit on the remaining chair as soon as the music stops.
#2 Treasure Hunt Boosts Problem Solving Skills
Treasure hunt is one of the best activities for two year olds, which improves problem-solving skills and teaches toddlers about effort and award principle. There are so many variations on treasure hunt games.
You can arrange a treasure hunt for a single child, or gather more kids, and divide them into groups. It will help them learn more about team play.
The treasure can be anything rewarding such as toys, and you can play the game both indoors and outdoors.
#3 Pass the Ball for Future Athletes
Ball games improve gross motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Pass the ball is a classic outdoor play for toddlers. All it takes is one light ball and a motivated kid.
Take your child into the park and pass the ball a short distance. You can applaud or say Bravo anytime your little one catches the ball or passes it successfully.
If there are older children that are willing to play with a toddler, it gets even better. Young kids tend to mimic the behavior of older kids and learn better through play.
Ultimately, the kids will learn to hold, catch and throw the ball with their hands. Start with a big, lightweight and soft ball, like this vivid rubber ball from Crocodile Creek.
#4 Hula Hoop Improves Posture
The hula hoop is a highly beneficial activity for toddlers. It improves balance, helps develop gross motor skills, coordination, rhythm, balance, etc.
Most toddlers will have fun playing with a hoop.
Hula hoops don’t require a large space of expensive gear. You can play it on the patio or your backyard, even if you have limited space.
Turn the music on to make it more fun, because it will take time until your child learns how to wiggle their hips properly.
Don’t forget to congratulate your child every time he or she manages to hold the hoop on the hips for several seconds. It will help boost motivation, so the kid will continue to practice!
#5 Hide n Seek – Best of Easy Toddler Activities
Hide n seek is one of the most fun games to play outside that never gets old!
But, entertainment isn’t the only reason why I recommend this children’s outdoor game.
Hide n seek includes running and hiding, so it improves muscle development and stamina. Because the game requires children to find a perfect hiding place, it boosts creativity, balance, coordination and concentration.
To avoid being spotted on, children need to stay still and quiet for some time. It is an excellent concentration and patience exercise!
Even if there aren’t any other peers available to play the game with your little one, you can be the player. That way, hide n seek becomes the best of family games for toddlers!
#6 Hopscotch Helps the Toddlers Learn to Count
Did you know that hopscotch improves essential physical skills? First of all, hopscotch helps the kid to gain body control and balance. Hopping increases muscle strength and eye-hand coordination.
Hopscotch is an excellent way to help your kid socialize with other kids in the park. The game is simple, and only requires the small item, such as rock, to use as a marker and a piece of chalk to draw the hopscotch.
If you are playing hopscotch with a toddler, draw a simple hopscotch court and make it more complex once your child learns the game basics.
#7 Start with Basic Traffic Rules Early with Red Light, Green Light
Red light, green light and similar games are simple, yet effective backyard activities for toddlers. The rules are straightforward – determine the start and the finish of the pathway, and stand at the finish point. When you say green light, the children can move forward toward you, and when you stay red light the children need to stop immediately.
Racing outdoor activities for toddlers, such as this one, improve muscle strength, stamina, and self-control. By playing it, the kid learns to make quick decisions, too.
Red light, green light is one of the outside games for kids that doesn’t require any tool or toy but still keeps children entertained and focused.
#8 Explore the Nature with Outdoor Hot n Cold
Best activities for toddlers at home can be played anytime, anywhere. Hot n cold game is one of them. You can play it indoors, too. But outdoors is almost, always more fun!
Hide a small object anywhere in your garden, and let the child seek it. Give the child directions- hot or cold, based on how close your child is to find the object.
The game is excellent for cognitive development and helps toddlers to learn the meaning of opposites.
#9 Homemade Soap Bubbles for an Ultimate Bubble Party
Making soap bubbles at home is such a lovely way to spend an afternoon with your family. You need soap and water and a soap-making machine. You can have your child run around and prick the bubbles. The more bubbles you make, the more fun the game will be!
If you want to make it more entertaining, make a competition. You’ll need one more player, which can be your partner or a sibling. Count how many bubbles each player pricked and declare a winner at the end of the round.
Play several rounds and you’ll make lifelong, memorable, and soapy memories.
This game improves object tracking skills, hand-eye coordination, and is one of the favorite outside activities for toddlers around the world.
Soap bubbles have always been popular among young children, and nowadays you can make your own soap bubbles using only affordable bubble toy guns, such as the Yoin gun.
#10 DIY Escape Room
Escape rooms are very popular among children and adults of all ages. So, why not make an escape room at home, to boost your children’s creativity and problem-solving skills?
Come up with a set of simple, toddler-friendly challenges in your backyard. You don’t have to make your child actually escape the space, you can lock something up with a numeric padlock, like a mom from the Activity Mom blog did.
Buy a padlock with four numbers, so you’ll have to come up with four challenges. As the child solves each challenge, you can unlock one number and so on.
#11 Arcade Style DIY Ring Toss For the Whole Family
Ring toss games are a subtype of stacking games, which are excellent for toddlers. You can convert the game into an outdoor game, by making your own stand with four pillars.
Each pillar should be a different color or have a specific label to indicate a different number of points. You can find a complete tutorial on Thecraftygentleman.net.
#12 Art Activities for Exciting Picnics
Wake up the little artist in your baby and bring all the creativity outdoors. You can have your child collect cones with you in the local wood, and then make some interesting objects from the cones.
Another outdoor fun for toddlers is camouflage painting with leaves and plants from a local park.
You can find more amazing outdoor art ideas on the Firefliesandmudpies.com blog!
#13 Jump the River Exciting Games for Parties
If you have a large group of toddlers to keep entertained and focused, try the Jump the river game. The game can be played with several kids of different ages.
It is excellent for gross motor skills, as it requires the child to practice jumping and perform the whole-body movement.
Moreover, Jump the river has a storytelling effect, as children need to imagine the river and play the game until only one of them is left on the other side.
#14 Game of Tag for Perky Kids
If you have a lively, hyperactive toddler and you don’t know how to keep him or her entertained, try the Game of Tag. The game is simple and can be played with a minimum of two players.
One kid is the “it”, and he or she needs to chase the others to pass the tag further. Then, the new person chases others, and so on. The game can be played as long as the kids can run!
It improves endurance, focus and physical strength.
#15 Frisbee for Whole-Body Training
Playing frisbee has cardiovascular benefits, but also improves the child’s awareness in space, and hand-eye coordination.
Just like the previous outdoor game for kids, playing frisbee is a socializing game. Shy children will embrace new friendships in the park over the mutual game.
If you have a dog, bring your pet to the park and enjoy a beneficial and fun afternoon filled with toddlers entertainment.
#16 Tricycle Riding As Introduction to Bike Riding
Toddlers are too young to ride a bicycle on their own, but a tricycle is perfect for kids between one and four years. It helps them practice movements that kids will use later while riding a bike. Tricycle riding improves their balance, posture, muscle strength and endurance.
My personal pick is the Besrey tricycle that features five ways to ride and a kid can use it for several years.
#17 Obstacle Course Aids Physical and Problem-Solving Skills
If your kid gets bored easily, make an obstacle course, so your child will enjoy dynamic outdoor games for kids. You don’t need any special toys and tools, you can use garden furniture, balls, old tires, balls, buckets, etc.
You can combine some games for kids to play outside I described above.
For example, ring tossing can be the first obstacle, a tricycle ride can be the second, then you can have your child crawl under the chairs, and pass the ball to someone, go through an old cardboard box, etc.
Outdoor Playing Tips for Parents of Toddlers
Here are several tips for parents that will make outdoor games with toddlers more fun, effective and safe!
When you are teaching your kid a new skill – such as tricycle riding or overcoming an obstacle course, make sure he or she wears helmet and knee pads to lower the risk of injuries.
Don’t forget sunscreen and bug spray too!
Don’t just go outside with your kid and expect your kid to play on its own. Play with your kids outside, especially if there aren’t other children around. It will make even the shyest toddler relax and be a happy kid!
Make Outdoor Activities a Habit
If you have a backyard, go outside with your kid every day at the same time. It will induce a habit of being outside and playing.
If you live in an apartment, try to go to the park as frequently as possible, so the kid will get used to being outdoors. The more time kids spend outside playing, the more they will like and enjoy it.
Going outside with your kid isn’t rocket science. You’ve done half the work by just having your kids outside, breathing fresh air and being in nature.
Be creative and try different games to see which games your child enjoys the best.
How did you like my list? If you have more fun ideas for things to do with toddlers at home outdoor, share them @babyjourney0183 on Pinterest, so more parents can get inspired!