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7 Things You Need To Do To Raise Adventurous, Active, Curious Kids

Want to raise active, adventurous, and CURIOUS kiddos? SO DO WE!
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We visited Iceland as guests of Animal Jam and Visit Iceland. Why would an online game for kids want to drag a bunch of bloggers to one of the most remote parts of Iceland? Because we are moms, and moms are role models for their children. Heard the phrase “If I can see it, I can be it”? Moms can have a huge impact when they show their kids that they can embrace adventure, that they love to get offline and outdoors, and that they are passionate and inspired by their environment and science.

In short, if your kids see you take on new experiences and that YOU are constantly learning new things, they will do the same. Thus, the #AdventureStartsWithMe hashtag.

Whether you are planning a trip to the zoo, a hike in the mountains, a trip overseas, or settling down with a good book, you are showing your kids the stuff that makes up an adventurous, curious life.

As a matter of fact, we’d love you to join our little hashtag. Let us know what you are doing with your kids to inspire adventure and a love of the world around them by adding your photos to the #AdventureStartsWithMe hashtag on Instagram. We’d love to see them!

7 Ways to Raise Adventurous, Active, Curious Kids

A few lessons learned in Iceland:

1. Embrace Adventure! Yes YOU!

What have you done lately that has pushed you out of your comfort zone? Tried anything new? You are the model for some many things for your children – including curiosity and adventure. That might mean gearing up and going on an adventure to Iceland, or it might mean exploring the outer limits of your own town, city or state. {You can check out our full Iceland itinerary HERE}

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2. Get Out Of Your Comfort Zone

What was the last thing you did that made you a little nervous. I’ll tell you a few for me.

Taking a dip in the Blue Lagoon. Why was that uncomfortable? Well for starters it was freezing and windy outside. It just seemed easier to stay in my warm clothes. But it was like a gigantic hot tub and SO worth it!

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How about when we visited the most remote part of Iceland. Getting in one of these rafts to go from the main boat to the nature reserve felt pretty darn adventurous. The water was really cold and I heard that if you fell in that your heart would stop instantly. {Maybe an urban legend?} Nonetheless, it was AMAZING.

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3. Try New Foods

Puffin anyone? I did it. Did I feel bad? A little. They’re cute. But when in Iceland . . .

4. Meet New People

Like these guys. The one on the left: the curator of the local arctic fox museum. He takes care of a few foxes, builds the exhibits, gives the tours, brews the coffee, makes a killer coffee cake for the cafe, and even makes his own marketing materials. He’s got 4 kids and loves the gigantic backyard that his kids have access too.

The one on the right? The Mayor of Súðavík {a little town of just about 200 people}. The youngest mayor in Iceland, and possibly the best dressed?

It was so interesting to hear about their lives and their perspectives in their little town in the most remote part of Iceland.

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Close to home it might mean visiting a different church, serving at a refugee center in your community, meeting new neighbors, striking up a conversation with your server at a restaurant. Be curious about the people around you and involve your kids in those new conversations.

5. Make Science A Seamless Part Of Your Life

“Let’s google that!”

“Let’s go there!”

“Let’s figure that out!”

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Those are all phrases to adopt into your vocabulary.

I love the questions I get from my 7-year-old. “Where does glass come from anyway? What about copper?” Well, that calls for a field trip to the Copper Mines.

Look at your child’s questions as opportunities to learn something!

I can now tell you all sorts of things about Iceland and it’s creatures because of our gigantic field trip. The Icelandic Horse? They were brought there by the Vikings in the 9th or 10th century and have been isolated and never bred with any other horses. If an Icelandic horse leaves Iceland it can never come back. We learned a lot because we asked A LOT of questions!

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6. Explore Through A Lens

Hand over the camera (or your iPhone) and let your kids explore through pictures outside. Odds are they’ll zoom in on bugs, plants, and anything else that catches their eye. They’ll see the world just a bit differently than you – and that will probably inspire YOU as well!

As for me? I always take better pictures when I am someplace new.

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7. Choose Entertainment That Inspires

It might be the books you get from the library, a documentary on Netflix, a new TED talk, or even a reality adventure show on TV. Fill your world with the things that make you ask yourself “would I ever do that?”.

Inspiring entertainment also comes down to the apps and games they play. What are your kids filling their heads with? A game like Animal Jam is rooted in STEM and education and just one of the many ways to plant the seeds of adventure and curiosity!

Why Animal Jam?

If you are familiar with Animal Jam then you know they are the world’s largest online social network for kids. Their passion is inspiring kids to learn about the natural world around them through interactive gameplay and offline activities that engender their curiosity about the sciences.

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Can an online game encourage offline adventure? A love of science? YES! Here’s how:

  • Animal Jam has an in-game Journey Book where kids find and collect cool facts about animals and environments in Jamaa (the world where everything in Animal Jam takes place). Help find fun critters in Kimbara Outback or in the Coral Reef!
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  • Visit Brady Barr’s Lab or Tierney Thys’ Aquarium where you can watch videos of these scientists out in the field and even submit your own questions for them to answer in future videos.
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  • Extend the fun offline with Animal Jam Academy – a free resource center full of science based crafts and experiments. Set screen-time privileges as a reward for completing fun science activities!
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