Twenty-first century children growing up in the United States spend an enormous amount of time with digital media. According a Kaiser Foundation study conducted in 2010, children between the ages of eight and 18 spend an average of 7 hours 38 minutes a day with digital media. That is a lot of time to spend on anything that is not heart healthy. Playing outside helps promote a healthy lifestyle and combats child obesity.
When I was a kid one of my favorite things to do was play outside. Most of us grew up in a time before cellphones and iPads. It was a great time to grow up If you were really lucky you could stay outside until the street lights came on. As a child I spent a great deal of time out in the country or at the lake during the summer time.
We would draw maps every night and make imaginary places to explore on penny hikes. We would flip a penny after each stop on our map. If the penny landed on heads we would go right it if it landed on tales, we went left. It seems it took us forever to explore the map and provided us with endless adventures. Each time the walk would be different so we never got bored. My siblings and I loved penny hikes and making our own adventure maps. Try the penny hike this summer and let us know what you think. Be sure and stay hydrated. It's time to get out and play!