Technology is often blamed for turning children into unhealthy, unfit creatures. But for technology loving kids, it can be a great tool to encourage them to move and keep fit. Throw in a little maths and there you have a perfect cocktail whose main ingredient is fun.
1. Children should be explained the emphasise placed on physical fitness by Islaam, and they should be encouraged to learn swimming, horse riding, archery etc. Children can make posters using computer softwares like ms word, photoshop with different ahdeeth about these sports, older children may want to try a presentation.
2. For smaller children, give them a stopwatch and let them run the length of the lounge/all the way up the stairs / around the house 3 times timing themselves to see how long does it take. Then encourage them to beat their time / times of other siblings. Throw in an occasional question like: who is the winner? how much less time A took than B? What’s the total time it took for all the participants? If it took 2 minutes to run the length of the park once, how many minutes do you think will it take to run 4 times?
3. Look up online fitness challenges to try.
4. Video the child doing his exercises, let siblings record each other’s exercises and then watch them and compare who did better? who did wrong and which step was wrong?
5. Let the children prepare spreadsheets and record their performance times and performance standards (based on the captured videos) on the sheets? After a week they can compare the result, are they getting better? Perhaps a graph will help in finding out?
6. Try this website. (yes a website can help children move)
(warning: there are some activities with music and some involving dancing, so please check out the safe ones first)
7. May be children want to make their own workouts and share them with others. What will aid in this purpose better than a slide show/presentation? Or perhaps they want to make a slide show showing the different katas of karate / different strokes of swimming etc.
(Children should be explained not to share the presentations with their pictures/videos on blogs or with strangers)
8. Children along with their friends from gym classes/ swimming classes / any other sport classes may want to maintain a team blog about their workouts/ sports etc and share with each other and the world what form of exercises / sports do they like best / is helping them.
(Caution: Children should be taught about blog safety rules prior to making a blog. They must also be encouraged to keep it impersonal and never to give out their details/ videos showing themselves etc on it)
A lot of similar activities can be created, using a camera or involving computer always does the trick for techno kids, inshAllah.