50 Things To Do Before You're 11¾

50 Things To Do Before You're 11¾

Image Credit: Steve Jones

In 2012 the National Trust launched its 50 Things To Do Before You're 11¾ campaign, which was aimed at getting kids outside and into nature, by encouraging them to take part in old fashioned fun such as stone skimming, tree climbing, den building and mud pie making.

The initiative was in response to a report commissioned by the National Trust which highlighted research that showed fewer than one in ten children ever regularly play in wild places compared to almost half a generation ago. Furthermore, only a third have never climbed a tree, one in ten can't ride a bike, and three times as many are taken to hospital after falling out of bed, as from falling out of a tree.*

The charity's 50 Things To Do Before You're 11¾ campaign provides a list of fun things to do outdoors for under-12s (and for those who are young at heart too!) including everything from running around in the rain and bug hunting, to setting up a snail race, damming a stream, flying a kite and making a mud pie.

Let's be honest; the list of 50 things has been massively toned down since 2012. The original list included climbing a tree, canoeing, throwing snow, swing on a rope swing, feed a bird in your hand, catch a butterfly in a net, abseiling, catch a fish.

The original idea was to get kids out and understanding that these activities, the things that kids have done for centuries, done with supervision are not scary or dangerous or something to be avoided.

Anyway, you can print off a wall chart from the National Trust's website to stick on your wall and tick each activity off as you try it.

They have also published a book to accompany the campaign.

* Stats from Play England: August 2011

50 Things To Do Before You're 11¾ - Complete List

The list has been updated a couple of times since the campaign was launched. This is the current list, updated in 2020.

  1. Get to know a tree
  2. Roll down a really big hill
  3. Camp outdoors
  4. Build a den
  5. Skim a stone
  6. Go welly wandering
  7. Fly a kite
  8. Spot a fish
  9. Eat a picnic in the wild
  10. Play conkers
  11. Explore on wheels
  12. Have fun with sticks
  13. Make a mud creation
  14. Dam a stream
  15. Go on a wintery adventure
  16. Wear a wild crown
  17. Set up a snail race
  18. Create some wild art
  19. Play Poohsticks
  20. Go paddling
  21. Forage for wild food
  22. Find some funky fungi
  23. Get up for sunrise
  24. Go barefoot
  25. Join nature's band
  26. Hunt for fossils and bones
  27. Go stargazing
  28. Climb a huge hill
  29. Explore a cave
  30. Go on a scavenger hunt
  31. Hunt for bugs
  32. Float in a boat
  33. Go cloudwatching
  34. Discover wild animal clues
  35. Discover what's in a pond
  36. Make ahome for wildlife
  37. Explore the wonders of a rock pool
  38. Bring up a butterfly
  39. Catch a crab
  40. Go on a nature walk at night
  41. Help a plant to grow
  42. Go swimming in the sea
  43. Help a wild animal
  44. Watch a bird
  45. Find your way with a map
  46. Clamber over rocks
  47. Cook on a campfire
  48. Keep a nature diary
  49. Watch the sunset
  50. Take a friend on a nature adventure

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