Something that I have found, through my years of working with young children and their families, is that many parents don’t encourage their children to play outside on a rainy day, so I thought I would share with you some tips and benefits of doing so.
Firstly, there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes, so during the winter months particularly, a good set of waterproofs is a must. Wet clothes stuck to your child at this time of year is not very nice and will make them cold.
You can pick up waterproofs very cheaply off selling sites and they are easily available from outdoor shops and even in the clothing sections of supermarkets.
Secondly, invest in wellies. It might sound obvious but you would be surprised at how many children don't own a pair.
And really, that is all you need.
So, what are the benefits of playing out in the rain?
1) It's fun! What child doesn’t like splashing in puddles?!
2) It gets children outside. Obvious I know, but the amount of children, particularly in the winter months, who don’t even get out for a walk is actually more than you would think.
3) It connects children with nature. Many a conversation about worms, snails and slugs have happened after we have noticed several coming out during the rain.
4) It’s great for building a child’s gross motor skills. Jumping in puddles, running about, using buckets to pour, digging in the wet soil are all fab for helping to strengthen those big muscles and just trying to keep balanced walking through mud will really help too.
5) It provides a different sensory experience. Lots of new smells, sights, sounds and touches to explore. My son, particularly likes to catch the raindrops on his tongue and both my kids love using chalk on the wet patio, as it goes paint like. The creativity is awesome and a great science lesson too!
6) Making mud pies or searching for rain loving animals like frogs or slugs and snails are always fun as is getting the children to paint with mud.
All play is learning though so however you choose to play in the rain you will be having a positive impact on your child’s development, so go get those wellies on!