Circular 1037-24
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By Kathryn Tarulli, Dr. Diane Bales and Dr. Charlotte Wallinga — Department of Human Development and Family Science

Be Physically Active: Keep your family fit by encouraging them to be physically active.

Many children have become less active over the years. Children used to walk to school, have recess daily, and play outside frequently. Today, opportunities for physical activity have become more limited. Many children spend large amounts of time watching television or playing video games rather than engaging in active play. Preschool children spend an average of two hours per day watching TV or playing video games.

As children get less physical activity, the rate of childhood obesity has risen dramatically. It is important to limit your child's time being inactive and to plan plenty of time for active play. You can help your child be more active by suggesting fun ideas. Play hide and seek, take your child to the playground, or create a game of hopscotch.

*The Nemours Foundation. (2012). KidsHealth: How TV Affects Your Child. Retrieved from html#cat168

Family Fun Activity: Super Shapes

Use this easy activity to help your child learn.

What You Need:

  • Sidewalk chalk for outdoor use
  • Colored paper for indoor use

What To Do:

  • Use sidewalk chalk to draw different colored shapes outdoors, or cut colored paper into shapes for indoor play
  • Take turns with your child giving directions and moving to the shapes. For example:
    • "Walk to a yellow circle"
  • Vary the movements by giving different directions. For example:
    • "Skip to a blue square"
    • "Run to a red triangle"
    • "Hop to a green circle"

This is publication 24 out of 24 in the Eat Healthy, Be Active: Keeping Children Healthy at Home and School series. For more information visit

Status and Revision History
Published on May 13, 2014
Published with Full Review on Mar 28, 2017

Diane W Bales Assoc Professor & Human Dev Spec, Family & Consumer Sciences
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