February 19, 2018

Get Outside: 50 Things to Do Before You’re 11 ¾


A few weeks ago, I posted a checklist I found on Honest to Nod with 100 Things to Do this Summer, including make popsicles, go to a drive-in movie and sleep in a tent. Believe it or not, I’ve already started planning the summer to ensure that not one box goes unchecked.

Well, with National Park Week kicking off on Saturday, I was excited to find another checklist campaign, this one developed by the National Trust in the U.K., that’s also set to launch on April 21. This one is designed to get kids off the couch and exploring outside, whether flying kites or hunting for bugs. So naturally it dovetails perfectly with National Park Week. Love it.

The National Trust created a checklist of outdoor activities and challenges, referring to the list as 50 Things to Do Before You’re 11 ¾. The list was compiled by a panel of experts from a list of 400 ideas submitted as those related to childhood memories that give them a love of nature.

There are lots of fun outdoor activities on this list, which are perfect for families already planning to head out to any of our national parks during National Park Week when admission is free. Take a look at a few of the outdoor challenges on the list:

Make a Mud Pie: I haven’t made one of these since I was five, and I’m sure my kids will love doing this. I’ll just need to make sure they have on their old sneakers!

Canoe Down a River: I just went kayaking with my husband a couple of weeks ago and canoeing is definitely on my list as a fun water activity to do with my older girls.

Cook on a Campfire: I’m still not much of a camper, but cooking on a campfire, or at the very least, outside of a cabin, does sound pretty fun.

Hunt for Treasure on the Beach: A perfect activity for so many beach-going families that hit the shore each summer. Bring along your pail and shovel and start digging!

Since this list was created by a British organization, there are also a few items on this list that are distinctly British. For example, “play conkers.” I had to look up conkers on Wikipedia and it’s a traditional English children’s game played using the seeds of horse-chestnut trees.

Do you have any fun outdoor activities that you like to do with your kids when spring and summer roll around? Let me know in the comments. I’d love to get some more ideas to get the kids outside!

Photo Credit: Rosanna Mignacca


  1. I love how they came up with the list: “The list was compiled by a panel of experts from a list of 400 ideas submitted as those related to childhood memories that give them a love of nature.”

    Have you read “101 Things You Gotta Do Before You’re 12!” by Joanne O’Sullivan?

    • Erin Gifford says:

      Ooh, I have not read that book by Joanna O’Sullivan, but it sounds like a should. Can’t wait to check it out. Thanks, Amanda! 🙂

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