December 06, 2011 Rose Cottrill

Nature play at its best

In November KaBOOM! launched its first guest blogging contest, asking parents to muse about their experiences with play. We received lots of entries, and while it was tough, managed to narrow it down to the top 10. Over the next ten weeks we will be publishing our winners. We hope you enjoy reading them as much as we did! Congratulations to all of our winners. In 10th place is Rose Cottrill from Weirton, West Virginia…


Don’t have a playground in your neighborhood? That’s okay. Take a look around and I bet you’ll find plenty of play opportunities.

My family especially looks forward to fall and winter when nature gives us an enchanting place to play right in our front yard. I hope you enjoy this slideshow highlighting our favorite activities.

After coming back from a long walk in Marland Heights, my family and I decided to rake the leaves in my father-in-law’s front yard.  

What could’ve been seen as a chore, ended up being so much fun – especially re-scattering all the leaves.

We even enlisted my father-in-law to play with us.

It was great exercise: we laughed and laughed until we got tired!

Simple things like these can really have a big impact on child's development because you are there sharing the joy with them.

Our children love the outdoors so much. They get so cranky when we stay inside. Even during the winter, we try to find something that we can do outdoors. They even love to shovel snow, which frequently turns into a snowball fight. Making snow angels only adds to the fun. 

Sledding is one of our favorite things to do! Our kids look forward to it every year.

There are so many things that we can do with our kids no matter what season it is. We just have to get creative. And it’s much better than buying your kids those high-tech gadgets where they just sit and get no physical activity. 

When we were in Korea, we used to go to a small hill near our house. They loved climbing up this small hill and then sliding down. It was messy, but fun!

We never had toys growing up but my childhood was full of fun because my parents were there to play with us all the time. This is what my husband John and I are doing with our own kids. Spending quality time with them is very important. When it comes to indoor activities, empty cardboard boxes, loose strings, and other inexpensive things can really spark a child’s creativity.

I am currently teaching my 4-year old son EJ at home and during our break time, we do things that he loves to do, like dancing. We watch videos on YouTube and imitate the artists’ moves. We are not great dancers but we always have fun because that is what he likes to do.  

Over the years, I’ve learned that finding the things your kids like to do is the key to having a happy tot at home!

parent perspective, nature play, parents, mom, guest blog, contest, weirton, west virginia