Best outdoor toys for kids

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Outdoor toys are one of the best ways to encourage kids to spend time outside. We talked to five toy and play experts to find the best outdoor toys for kids, including toddlers, elementary-schoolers, and tweens. See also: the best kiddie pools, playhouses, swing sets, and outdoor toys for toddlersDue to unusually high demand and supply shortage, some of these toys are out of stock at major retailers. We continue to monitor inventory and update this list accordingly.It can be hard to get kids off screens and into the great outdoors. But with the right games and toys, they’ll be begging to go out, and you might even get to relax while you watch them play. From simple water balloons to elaborate inflatable pools, we compiled some of the best outdoor toys for your kids this summer. To learn more about what to look for in an outdoor toy and to find some of the best, we spoke to five child and toy experts: Laurie Leahey, senior editor at Toys, Tots, Pets & More, Joyce Shulman, founder and CEO of Macaroni Kid; Lee Scott, director of curriculum and enrichment programs for The Goddard School; Adrienne Appell, senior director of strategic communications at The Toy Association and an expert behind the Play Today campaign; and Laurie Schacht, chief toy officer of The Toy Insider. What makes a good outdoor toy? Before getting into specific recommendations, our experts shared the attributes they believe are necessary for an outdoor toy to be great. Most of them agree that not only should an outdoor toy obviously get kids outside, it should also get them moving. In addition, Scott recommends open-ended toys. “Using interactive toys help children express their creativity and build critical thinking skills,” she said. Toys like this allow children to use their imagination while playing because there is no one set way to engage with them.”Outdoor toys that stand the test of time are those that tap into a child’s inherent desire for creative play, physical movement, and the joy of nature,” said Shulman.A good toy needs to be durable and safe, too. Be sure to practice constant, close supervision around water and always use helmets with toys like bikes and scooters. Here are 15 of the best outdoor toys for kids:

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