Sunday, January 15, 2012

How to get kids to play outside: Try a camera

study of 3rd Place, Brooklyn
If you want to get kids off the couch and into the Great Outdoors, try giving them a camera to play with. Kids love cameras! Buy a cheap one and don’t worry too much about the quality. For most kids, taking pictures is all about snapping the photos and not so much about how they look.

You might even suggest a photo essay. (And for extra credit, why not hold a contest and offer a prize?)

Here are some photo essay ideas:

• Alphabet objects (apple tree, bark, creek, dirt, etc.)

• Pictures of what people do when it snows (shoveling, sledding, cleaning off their cars)

• Animal pawprints (pigeons and squirrels count!)

• Scat (wild animal poop)

• Clouds

• The first snowfall

• Pictures from the point of view of a cat or squirrel

• Draw pictures in the snow and take photos of the pictures

• Shots of birds or other wildlife

And if you need further inspiration, just look to the master, Ansel Adams:

Have fun!


  1. It makes me want to go out in the snow! We have a compost bin down the hill, and after a big snow fall, I can see the many tracks of all the animals who apparently visit it on a regular basis to see what's in. SO GREAT!

  2. I love seeing animal tracks. The other weekend we were at my mom's and we got snow overnight and a bunny had hopped the length of her porch. :)