"Mom, I'm bored!" You may have heard this line come from one of your kids after school has let out for the year. Though the days may feel long, summer doesn't have to be a bore. Keep these 16 ideas on hand, so your little ones always have a way to keep their imagination alive and their bodies active while school is out.
Let's take a look at how your family can enjoy this season and make memories that last long as a hot summer day.
Educational Exercises To Keep Their Minds Active
Your little ones are used to spending hours each day learning new concepts in math, lessons in history, and ways to express their creativity through art. At first, you may want to let them veg out for a while with video games and TV shows. Eventually, it's a good idea to help foster their exploration and curiosity about the world around them instead of indulging in mindless activities.
Here are a few of our favorite summer activities to inspire them to stay sharp before returning to their classrooms in the fall.
1. Try Out a New Skill
Has your oldest been expressing curiosity about playing an instrument? Though it's a commitment, summer is the perfect time to try out a new hobby and see if it sticks. You can support your kid by helping them pick out a beginner's keyboard to begin learning their favorite songs throughout this time. Listen to their improvement and let them know you believe in their progress in this new skill.
2. Illustrate Your Own Comic Book
Do your little ones love when you read comic books to them at bedtime? If your grade-school kids have started showing recent interest in coloring, you can give them the idea to make their own DIY comic book, complete with a storyline on each page.
Help them make the story personal by adding friends and loved ones to the tale. You'll end up with a narrative that makes you all giggle at bedtime.
3. Set Up a Science Experiment
Summer boredom is no match for exciting science experiments. One easy experiment to try is testing out soap and pepper's natural properties. To witness this science magic, fill a bowl with water and pour pepper generously across the surface. Drop some dish soap in the middle and watch as the pepper flakes scatter to the bowl's edges away from the soap foam.
Your children will get a kick out of this easy trick, so don't be surprised if they want to see it repeated a few times and try it on their own. For easy cleaning, this might be best at a water table.
4. Get a New Workbook of Brain Teaser Games
Do you have an exceptionally clever child? You may find that they need increased mental stimulation during these long, empty days. To help stimulate their minds, you can let them pick out a workbook of brain teasers and logic puzzles. They could enjoy crossword puzzles for kids, riddles, or easy games of sudoku. These mental exercises can help you pass the time while you wait for classes to begin again.
Activities To Encourage Their Creativity
Your kids' minds are buzzing with imagination and ideas. Showing interest in their creativity at an early age can empower them to develop their fun hobbies into incredible skills as they grow. Help them express their visual artistry or encourage their film-making skills during your extended free time this summer.
Here are some fun activities to foster their creative gifts:
5. Make a Family Mural
If you have tiny tots with big imaginations, this family activity is a great summer project. Start with a massive piece of construction paper that covers one of your walls. Each day, add illustrations, words, and abstract elements to a different portion of the mural.
Pace yourself so that you finish it as the summer months end. After it's finished, you may want to keep your mural in a memory box to remember all the cute details as your children grow. These memories are the real treasures.
6. Let Your Kiddos Try Their Eye for Photography
Kids often express an interest in their parents' technology and tools. If you have a camera lying around, you may be used to telling your child "no" when they ask to hold it. If your kid wants to see the world through a lens, the summertime might be the best time for them to start learning.
Grab a waterproof disposable camera from a convenience store and let them capture the world through their eyes. For an extra challenge, create a summer bucket list of items to capture around your neighborhood: sort of like a treasure hunt.
7. Press Your Own Flowers in a Scrapbook
If you notice the beginnings of your days are free during the summer, consider going for morning walks with your little ones. Along the way, your child may see flowers in your yard that excite them. Marvel at the unique colors and natural beauty together, then pick your favorites.
When you return inside, you can press your flowery finds in a scrapbook. This activity allows your child to look back at their lovely pressed flowers all year long. Challenge older kids to identify the flowers through some light research.
8. Let Them Record a Kids' Talk Show
Do your kids have vibrant personalities? Let them try their hand at recording a talk show for kids on an audio or video recorder. Help them think of kid-friendly topics to discuss, then enjoy the content they brainstorm for their entertaining program. You'll love replaying their creation years later.
Rainy Day Games To Keep Fun Alive
In many parts of the world, the summer is a prime time for weeks of stormy weather. Staying indoors can make a happy kid feel glum, so it's a good idea to have a few rainy day activities on hand to keep the rainy blues away. When a hike, throwing water balloons, and other outdoor activities are off the table, try these ideas for indoor family fun.
9. Have a Movie Marathon
You may want to monitor your kiddos' screen time during the long summer days. Still, every once in a while, a movie marathon is in order. Let each family member choose their favorite show, then coordinate a schedule for movie showings with breaks in-between for other stimulating activities.
Make sure to have plenty of snacks like popcorn or ice cream ready for this cinematic experience. You can even set up a blanket fort or tent to watch the movie from.
10. Choose a Recipe To Try Together
Preparing a meal can be an incredible bonding event. If you're stuck indoors with your little ones, consider choosing a recipe that you can all help make. Involve your entire household in selecting the appetizers, main course, beverages, and dessert. They'll feel proud that they helped you create something so delicious.
11. Make a Time Capsule
We know how precious these moments are with your family. From the moment each child was born, you've likely been documenting their growth milestones and adorable anecdotes.
On a rainy summer day, let your kids record their memories and memorabilia in a time capsule to keep in your attic or basement. Years later, you can open it together and remember your lives as they were one rainy summer day.
Get Active Outdoors
During the summer, you'll want your kids to get as much exercise as they can to stay healthy and happy.
Here are a few outdoor activity ideas for your little ones and big kids alike:
12. Set Up an Obstacle Course in Your Yard
Want to create a memory your children will recall for a lifetime? Set up your very own obstacle course for a day of games in your yard. Consider inviting family members or friends over to participate in the fun. Make the day even more exciting by holding an awards ceremony afterward, complete with refreshments and prizes.
Don't be afraid to try unconventional challenges: a water balloon fight or a sidewalk chalk art contest can be a lot of fun.
13. Catch Butterflies and Dragonflies in a Local Field
Teaching your kids to find beauty in nature is priceless. For a dreamy summer activity, grab some bug-catching nets and explore a local field with your kiddos on a pleasant day.
Watch as dragonflies, ladybugs, and butterflies flit from flower to flower and talk about the beauty you see in each creature. Carefully catch a few of these specimens to see them up-close, then release them back into their habitat. It's like a nature scavenger hunt.
14. Take a Family Bike Ride
Maybe your kindergartener recently learned to ride their bike without training wheels. If the rest of your family has bikes, scooters, or rollerblades to ride, you may want to go for a family bike ride just before sunset. The sun going down and the evening breeze returning can make for a delightful experience for everyone involved. Just make sure to protect your skin from bug bites.
15. Play Softball in Your Backyard
Do you have a giant backyard? If so, you may have the perfect setting for a friendly game of softball. You could even invite the neighbors and family friends to join your kids' teams. Add a hotdog cookout into the mix, and you'll have a backyard activity that's enjoyable for everyone involved.
Collect Nature's Souvenirs
This idea may sound simple, but it's one that your kids may find more enjoyable than you'd expect. Let your little ones loose in the backyard and tell them to collect rocks and leaves that they find especially interesting. You can look at their collection together, then use their leaves to do leaf-rubbing art with crayons and construction paper.
16. Have a Picnic
Picnics are a timeless summer activity that your kids will love. Encourage your older children to prepare an easy meal that will fit into a picnic basket. Find a blanket you can use to keep their legs safe from bug bites and help them pack their beverages, napkins, and utensils. They can set up their picturesque meal in your yard. Don't forget to take photos of this precious memory.
During the summer, the fun never stops. Here are some of our honorable place mentions for best summer activities:
- The classic lemonade stand
- Sensory bins with shaving cream
- Chasing the end of a rainbow
- Creating a parade featuring siblings and family pets
The Best Tips for Summer Activities
It's a great idea to keep this list of activities handy when kids begin to get restless. As your kids try out each of these adventures, there are a few helpful tips you may want to keep in mind. These will help you to maximize your fun throughout these playful days.
Encourage Your Kids To Find Fun in Unlikely Places
Today, technology offers children and adults instant gratification at their fingertips. It's not always easy to rewire your mind to find joy in simple things, but it's a worthy pursuit. Teach your little ones the value of finding entertainment in unlikely places.
They can make dollhouses out of cardboard boxes or use old tuna cans as sailboats in a sink. By teaching them this principle, you may open their minds to a world of possibilities this summer.
Be Mindful of Screen Time
Twenty years ago, parents didn't have to worry as much about their kids having too much technology exposure. Today, even toddlers and preschoolers often have access to hundreds of TV channels, websites, apps, and more through multiple devices.
Unfortunately, prolonged time in front of a screen may prevent your kids from using their creativity and staying active outdoors. You may want to keep their minds engaged with educational activities and fun outdoor adventures to ensure they're well-rounded and happy.
Use Protective Clothing to Stay Shielded from the Sun
When you spend lots of time outdoors, you should think about your sun exposure. Some people are lucky enough to have a shady yard with lots of protection from the heat. Others should consider dressing their little ones in hats and other protective clothing with sunscreen to keep them comfortable, safe, and cool during outdoor fun.
Take Measures to Keep Pesky Mosquitoes Away
If your kids play outside often, they may come into contact with mosquitos that leave painful bites. These marks may seem harmless at first, but they can turn into painful wounds if your children scratch at them. Plus, some children have reactions to mosquito bites that are more intense than others.
Thankfully, you can shield your children from these bug bites with BuzzPatch Mosquito Repellent Patches. These adorable repellent stickers can easily attach to your kids' shirts, socks, and shorts for hours of protection. With the cutest designs and natural ingredients, BuzzPatch patches are perfect for your kiddos on summer days.
When your little ones are playing outside, they don't always remember to drink water often. If they ignore their natural thirst, you may notice them becoming drowsy, dizzy, or irritable. To keep them adequately hydrated and healthy, try to get them to drink eight ounces of water for every thirty minutes of activity. You might consider setting a timer on your phone to keep track of their play and having water bottles nearby that are easily accessible.
Wear Shoes That Keep Your Kids' Feet Protected
While you spend time outside this summer, don't neglect to dress your children in proper clothing to keep them safe from accidents. If you plan on letting little ones play outside, ensure they have shoes that cover their feet and protect them from sharp edges, icky bug bites, and hot surfaces. It's one measure you can take that allows them to have minimal injuries and maximal fun.
Home, Sweet, Summer Camp
Many people think that winter is the most wonderful time of the year. We know that summer is just as magical. Firefly sightings, all-day craft sessions, and family picnics can fill these months with moments and memories that your family enjoys all through your lives.
At The Natural Co., we want to help protect your kids from bug bites so they can enjoy these extraordinary months of exploration and adventure.