We are pleased to bring you another guest post from Charles Carpenter at healingsounds.info. Charles discusses ways to help your child find productive, fun and self-confidence boosting outlets. Thank you, Charles for the helpful resource!

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Hobbies are great ways for kids to learn while having fun doing something they really enjoy. Children gain a sense of accomplishment, express creativity, and learn the value of persistence. A hobby reduces stress, boosts self-esteem, instills patience, and strengthens decision-making competency. Hobbies also provide a positive alternative to activities such as video gaming, which can take up hours on end for kids who lack an engaging alternative.

Getting Started

If you’re not quite sure where to start or what kind of hobby your child prefers, hobby stores and online retailers offer starter kits that allow you to try different activities, from coin collecting to painting. Check out the weekly deals and money back opportunities from retailers like Walmart.

Chemistry

Science can be a very enjoyable hobby — your kids can make things change colors or spew liquid safely and learn about how different substances react together. Have your child try out the “Glass of Lava” experiment, an inexpensive “recipe” that only requires vegetable oil, food coloring, salt, water, and a glass or beaker. In other words, it’s very budget-friendly.

Get Cooking

Few hobbies are better for teaching children self-sufficiency and instilling self-confidence than cooking. Kids love learning to feed themselves as well as their family, while learning to follow recipe instructions and to be patient while waiting for their favorite dishes to come out of the oven. Cooking is also where children can learn the connection between good food and nutrition. If you haven’t already, use sales and savings options from retailers like Target to find some kid-friendly kitchen tools that will make introducing this skill to your children much easier.

Express Your Thoughts

Children used to grow up learning to write by keeping a diary and finding their “voice.” Today, there’s a wide range of ways kids can take up this creative and self-reflective hobby, including journaling, blogging, or creative writing. It’s a valuable skill that serves children well throughout their academic careers and into their professional lives. Writing instills mental discipline by helping them learn to organize their thoughts and communicate them clearly and coherently. If your child has a predilection for writing, encourage them to write stories to help develop a unique style. And if you use free apps and websites, it won’t cost you a thing.

Say “Cheese”

Smartphone cameras have become more popular than traditional point-and-shoot cameras. Yet the artistry of learning to judge subjects and compose beautiful photos is still a wonderfully creative hobby. Through photography, children learn a more in-depth appreciation of the natural world and the people around them, as well as how making minor setting adjustments and manipulating photos in the darkroom can make a photo more beautiful. Retailers like Amazon are excellent sources of affordable camera equipment, so watch for online offers and discounts to make sure you’re saving some money.

Take a Hike

Not all hobbies require an internet connection, beakers, test tubes, or a telescope. Some of the most rewarding hobbies are physical in nature and enjoyed by kids who just love spending time in the great outdoors. Not only is hiking a very popular hobby, it’s a great way to get some exercise without having to spend a lot of money on equipment other than a good pair of hiking boots. Kids also learn to plan and strategize routes, read maps, and test their endurance by trying new distances and paths of varying difficulty.

Play a Tune

Studies have shown that children gain improved cognitive functioning, develop problem-solving skills and enhance hand-eye coordination by learning to play an instrument. It can also help children develop math skills that serve them well in school and beyond. To save money, you can rent an instrument before you decide to buy one. However, when you do decide it’s time to purchase your own, look for coupons that can help you cut that cost.

A hobby can be the kind of positive activity parents often wish their children would try instead of spending too much time with a video gaming console. There are many affordable activities that can impart lasting physical and mental benefits kids can draw on throughout their lives.