With the crazy number of game consoles and handheld devices, it’s more difficult than ever to get kids to want to play and be active outside. So many kids would much rather sit on the sofa with a controller in their hand than to create fun in their own backyard adventure.
It’s no surprise that childhood obesity in America has shot through the roof. Creativity has become defeating some weird game villain and completing a quest, all while those hind parts are glued to a seat. (Oh my gosh; I just sounded like my grandmother.)
We’re living in an age where physical education is limited and creative imagination exists by use of someone else’s creative imagination. I don’t like the idea of my children not having fun unless they have some sort of device in their hand or console in front of them. Here’s the truth.
Electronic devices can be an obstacle in getting kids to move around and find creative things to do.
So, there are several things that I put into place at my house, and I did these things right away.
- I got rid of weekday video games. There’s a no video games during the weekday rule. The only exception is when special permission is given. This means that during their free periods, they have to think of something else to do, and if the words, “I’m bored” are mentioned at any time, I pick an activity for them to do.
- I made a mandatory 60 minute move rule. At least one hour a day, my kids are required to move. This movement can be outside play, going on a walk or something that gets them moving around. Another exception. On a rainy day, I may just allow time on our Just Dance game to get some exercising in, but they can also opt to do a workout DVD. They just have to spend 60 minutes each day moving around.
- I gave them responsibilities to earn game time. Each child is responsible for keeping an area of our house clean along with their room and a kitchen chore. Alongside of school work, we don’t really have much time for squandering time away on video games and television. I teach them to work first and play later.
Honestly, I don’t like the thought of my children feeling like they’re entitled to things. Giving them daily tasks to complete before they can play games helps them to appreciate their time on the games much more than they would if they just had access to the games all the time.
As I’ve been working on my weight loss journey, it’s become much easier to get pounds off when I’m active with them. We had a number of rainy days last week, so we did more of the Just Dance sweat point challenges. Even doing that with the kids has been a lot of fun. Some of them can really be competitive! It’s been a fun week doing these dances with them, and pretty well worth it having danced off another 3 pounds since last week’s report.
Having my kids move more has been a help to us all. Their activity has positively affected their annual weigh ins at the doctor’s office, and it’s made them more conscious of getting out there and getting more active.
What do you do to keep your family fit?