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We talked to Kari Svenneby from the Active Kids Club

6 questions for Kari Svenneby:
How do you get other parents and kids to join your playgroup?
I have a blog and started my new outdoor playgroup at ActiveKidsClub.com. People, who are interested in joining, can read about what I do on my blog and feel inspired and join with a click of the mouse. I also find using local networks in your community helpful. Networking to parent groups and hanging up flyers are both great ways to get new members in your group.
Do you typically have a plan for what the kids will play or do you just see what they come up with?
I usually have a plan for an activity based on the season and weather that is both for the parents and kids to participate in. Typically I find that it is good to have one plan activity/game for the kids as it can break the ice for both the kids and parents if they don’t know each other that well. But, the goal is that the kids are making their own games and activities. It can be amazing to see all the fun things kids come up with if we just let them use their own imagination.
Do you have a favorite game or activity you love to do in the spring?
Who doesn’t love spring when you live in a cold weather climate? There are so many things to do beyond enjoying the April showers and puddles perfect for jumping. We also love to start gardening early in our house; starting with planting veggies and flowers indoors to get a jump on the season. We have had our bikes tuned up for the season and have them ready for the first opportunity we get to hit on the road. I am also looking forward to my oldest and I trying our hand at geocaching this spring. Geocaching is a fun game that is uses gps and map skills to hunt for hidden treasure.
What about when the weather is less than ideal?
It is not always easy to get excited for going outside when the day may be a bit on the dreary, grey side. We try to live for the saying, “No bad weather, only bad clothing”. That means we try to prepare for the worst and hope for the best when it come to the weather. Having the right rain gear makes it a lot easier to get out and stay out there. When you are outside and you are not cold and wet, it might not feel so grey after all. The fresh air makes us all feel better.
Do most of the parents play games with kids or do they just supervise?
The beauty of an outdoor playgroup is that there are no rules on how you structure them. Some groups like to do more games while other groups like to go with the flow. I think the most important goal is to inspire the kids to play and the parents are around to supervise. Some of the groups will also go to different locations to find different natural experiences. They walk, take a farm trip or visit a maple syrup sugar bush, which can become the activity. The actual doings are up to what the location brings.
With warmer weather approaching, what are you most looking forward to?
To wear summer dresses and not have to put so much clothing on the kids and to spend a lot of time in the backyard being barefoot this season. I am also looking forward to long lazy summer nights with a glass of wine, picnics and outdoor swimming.

Kari Svenneby is the founder of ActiveKidsClub.com

Photo by ShootsNikon via Flickr

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