There has been a bit of discussion lately around the entertainment value of toys vs. natural, outdoor experiences for kids. So which is cooler? Toys or nature; nature or toys?

Our question is, “Why does it have to be either or?”

My six year old son is really into knights in armor and he loves to play, but he has just as much fun creating outdoor games with a stick we found during a walk. Toys are exciting and fun, but so is being outside! It’s easy to enjoy both by creating outdoor adventures that include toys. Outside, there are leaves, sticks, mud puddles, clouds, stars, water, sand, dirt,  that inspire kids to  imagine, be creative and actively play.  Mother Nature’s playground is open to all!

And with the amount of time kids spend on electronics reaching upwards of 10 hours a day, a little more fresh air will do them a ton of good! Interacting with the natural environment brings out the best in kids. It helps them exercise their imaginations and bodies, learn how to play together, burn off steam and get ready to take on the day.

We think there is plenty of room for toys AND nature. The kids in this video do, too. Can you tell the difference?


Me and my son playing in the dirt.
Me and my son playing in the dirt.
NWF created the Be Out There movement to help parents find ways to get their kids outside for their overall health and happiness. No matter where you live or how often you get outside, Be Out There wants to help you find more ways to get your kids connected to nature. Many moms, companies, and like-minded organizations agree and have joined the movement. We hope you will, too!

What do you think?

Is there room for both in your child’s life? Share this video if you think toys and nature can play nice!