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Why do kids need new experiences?

Boy riding a wave

To save our sanity, yes! But no really, it’s science, happiness is derived from experiences. Why? Because they encourage us to be in the moment!

Kids experiences are often shared with friends, shared with strangers, or shared with your own family, either through participating together or in sharing the stories after the event.

With new activities and attractions popping up all the time, it’s easy to find something new to try. Mixing social interactions with new environments or challenges is great for supporting our little ones in forming their sense of identity, place in the world, and to ensure they don’t end up approaching life like a picky eater!

What could be more fun and positively influential than getting the family moving and challenging your mind climbing, hitting the arcade for some sensory overload with the kids, reconnecting with nature and getting up close with the animals, or seeing a show together at the theatre?

And beside your tricycle or your bike, can you really recall more than a handful of your favourite toys from childhood? Or is it the cubby houses you made with friends, the horse riding, the excitement of the Movie World stunt show and meeting Bugs Bunny that remains fondly etched in your memory?

Experiences rather than more toys are also good for us as parents! – less clutter, more storage space, plus an opportunity to connect with our children.

It’s certain we value experiences, so why not share your happy place with your children! Here are our top 6 reasons why children need experiences.

1. FORMING POSITIVE CONNECTIONS

Being in the moment, spending quality time and building trust will foster positive relationships between you and your child.

Whether your child is doing an activity with family, friends, neighbours, or wider community, all offer opportunities for social interaction where they learn to get along with others, understand we are all different, and form new friendships.

2. EXPOSURE TO THE WIDER WORLD

Children who are immersed in alternative environments gain another perspective on the world around them offering an opportunity for new understanding. See their hearts and minds open to more cultures, possibilities, and alternative ways of doing things.

3. BRAIN DEVELOPMENT

We know genetics play a part but learning and experience is instrumental to a child’s brain growth and development. According to Dr Suzuki exposure to new or unique experiences will activate neuroplasticity of the brain, making our ‘brains smarter, moods brighter and making us more motivated’.

Put your child in a garden maze or a laser tag centre and straight away they will be utilising their thinking, language, symbols, managing self while relating to others through participating and collaborating, all of which leads to the development of cognitive abilities.

4. GOOD VIBES

You know those times when you tell your child you have planned a special surprise for the weekend? Couldn’t you just replay that moment over again as their eyes light up with JOY while they start to imagine and guess what it could be?!

Good vibes in the lead up, during the event itself and then relived through sharing photos and video of the experience to prompt their memory and reflection. Don’t underestimate the power of this as children under 6 years of age are still developing their memory.

5. STORYTELLING

We love hearing our children sharing their stories of adventure, discovery, and unique experience! It’s a fantastic way to develop their language and creative storytelling skills.

The elements involved with an experience are often much more immersive and layered as they describe the place, what they were doing, who was there, and the overall theme from the event.

6. CONFIDENCE

With so many amazing activities and attractions now available, encouraging your child to try something different like the zipline and high ropes, circus class, or trampoline park is a great way to conquer fears or revel in the adventure, either way fostering greater self-awareness and confidence.

Often you’ll find this new exposure leads them to discover that one thing that really lights them up and becomes a continued pursuit.

When you’re next considering a treat for the kids, remind yourself that kids don’t need more toys they need more adventures! SPARK POP is here to help us all untrash playrooms with a one stop shop for a growing collection of Things to Do with kids, gifting for children and party venue directory.

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