Here’s Why Kids Need to Spend More Time Outdoors
It's springtime here in God's Country, Northwest Louisiana. It's that brief two week window when it's not hot as blazes outdoors and it's not January. It's that magical time of the year when the mosquitoes don't try to eat you alive until right before dark and you can actually enjoy the scenery without sweat running into your eyes.
I bring this up because when I arrived at Case De McCoy (my house) yesterday afternoon, I was totally rocked back on my heels to see the youngest of the three McCoy boys, my son Colt, inside, playing video games.
Whoa! Wait a minute. This can't be happening. What are you doing in here? Heck, I'm almost 58 years old, and even I don't want to be inside when it's this beautiful out there.
So, I've got an important announcement to make to parents all over. Not just here, but all over America. So, I'm gonna use my "professional announcer outside voice" here.
KIDS NEED TO GO OUTSIDE! They're spending way too much time indoors and I'm not going to allow it anymore.
When I was a kid, my Mom had to threaten us kids to come inside. Maybe it was because we didn’t get central air conditioning until I was about 14 years old. Maybe it was because I lived in a cool neighborhood with lots of kids. Maybe it was because we had the ugliest shag carpet you ever saw in our living room; or maybe, just maybe, it was because I was in high school before we even had Atari and anything was better than Atari.
We only had 3 channels on TV and my little sister was the remote control. I remember when Shreveport first got cable TV and I was amazed. I saw a naked woman on TV and I’m pretty sure it made me mentally unstable and explains a lot of what you have to deal with each morning.
There was just no reason to be inside. Nothing cool happened there, except helping Mom fold clothes and make your bed, and no self-respecting kid was going to do any more than he was made to do.
So getting rid of the "tech" stuff has got to be the ticket to get kids back outside, the way God intended it.
I’m seriously thinking of getting rid of satellite TV, doing away with cell phones, and throwing all Nintendo’s, Playstations, Ipads and all that crud in the trash. I’m gonna replace all that stuff with things like “imagination” and “hard work.” Things like yard rakes, lawn mowers, shovels and hammers. The things my Daddy raised me on. I don’t think I turned out too badly.
Course, that's a matter of perspective, but I've never done time at Angola, so there's that.
To sum it all up, if you're looking for the best reasons to have the kids spend time outdoors, there's plenty of Vitamin D out there. Sunshine is good for everyone. They'll learn to work a little. It'll give their eyes a break from the screen, most importantly, I'm proof that it could keep them out of prison.