When I see my boys staring at their handheld devices on a nice day, I will admit – I get a little nervous. I wonder what effect the world of electronics has had on our youth, and I remind myself to encourage them to get outside and explore the world around them. A 2010 Kaiser Foundation Study found that children and teens on average spend almost 8 hours each day on entertainment media. The truth is that technology is here to stay, and a child’s love of it isn’t going to go away anytime soon. Fortunately, there are some simple things that you and I can do to break that technology addiction and rekindle an adventurous spirit.
The easiest thing to do is to encourage them to explore those things that interest them, and to do so in a hands-on manner. If your child loves science, then get him a simple science experiment kit, and let him learn first hand. If he loves bugs and nature, get him a bug magnifying glass and let him play in the dirt. If it’s a fascination with the outdoors, then a simple survival book and a Swiss Army Knife may be the beginning of a life-long love of nature. Boys thrive when they can learn by doing, and there’s no better time to start than when they are young and uninhibited.
Inspire your child’s love of learning and adventure through stories. Whenever possible, take the time to visit with inspiring and adventurous people that your child can learn from. The impact they have can be profound and last a lifetime. When visiting opportunities are limited, turn to books. Inspiring true stories such as Lightkeepers, The Ten Boys Boxed Set or Normandy – A Graphic History of D-Day can inspire your children to do and achieve more than they ever thought possible. Fictional stories about heroes and warriors can broaden their horizons and teach them to dream big.
Last, but certainly not least is to be a good example. Be active yourself so the next time you encourage your children to get outside and explore the world around them they can’t say, “But you never do!” Better yet, be active and learn together as a family. Take the time for a family hike or an afternoon together at your local museum. Whatever your chosen activity, use it as an opportunity to learn together. A life-long love of adventure may start when you are young, but a true adventurous spirit never grows old.
This is a guest post written by Trisha at JM Cremps. To find thousands of ways to inspire a passion for learning and to ignite an adventurous spirit within your boys, visit www.jmcremps.com. Request your copy of their free Adventure Guide Catalog today, and you’ll discover why over 100,000 families rely on JM Cremp’s as their go-to resource for hands-on activites for adventurous boys, ideas & toys to enhance active imaginations, fun gear for outdoor adventures, parenting resources, and educational tools for creative learning. Best of all it makes holiday shopping stress free!