Kids and summer= free time for mom to fill up with activities. Gone are the days of sending the kids outdoors with a hose if they are thirsty. Okay, maybe not gone but at least not as popular. While I want my kids to come up with their own creative venues for entertainment in the long summer months, I also came up with a list for them to use as a springboard to get the ideas going and keep “Mom, there is nothing to do, I am bored!” from becoming an all too familiar a refrain.
I wanted to share these 25 Ways to Avoid Summer Boredom that I came up with apart from the typical summer water balloon fights and homemade popsicles (although those are great ideas too! ). These are not just for the kids, however. You may find some things here to add to your summer bucket list too mom. Most can be started independently and only require some assistance from you depending on age and ability.
25 Ways to Avoid Summer Boredom
- Write a summer bucket list. Start your summer off on the right foot by setting some goals for fun. Come up with your own and use this list for some ideas, do your best to check off all the items on your bucket list.
- Start a business. Your child can keep busy by offering to mow, pull weeds, pick up pet poop, sell lemonade, babysit, wash windows, water plants, or sell their handicrafts.
- Try a new hobby. Let them try their hand at your favorite hobby or look around for other things they can try- crafting, gardening, cooking, etc…
- Learn an instrument. Summer is a great time to try out new instruments, find classes locally or learn online. It can be as big as the piano or as little as a recorder. An end of summer concert will be in order!
- Attend sports camp. A couple hours a day for a week or two at soccer or cheerleading camp may open the door to a lifelong passion.
- Make a movie. Put your kids drama to good use and let them make a video with your camcorder or cell phone. Opening packages, a fake weather report, or mini play they wrote themselves.
- Craft something. I have heaps of craft items like paper plates, pipe cleaners, google eyes, oil pastels, colored paper, and several types of glue. Keep a basket of craft supplies where they have full access and let them get creative.
- Create a new recipe. Have an Iron Chef type competition between siblings, or just let them get creative with a few ingredients. Not every recipe needs to be cooked. Think smoothies, salads, snack mixes, etc.
- Volunteer around town. Spend some time at a retirement home, packing up homeless bags, collecting canned food from friends and neighbors, or dishing out hot meals in a soup kitchen.
- Explore the library. Not just a quick drop in pick up a chapter book or two, really explore the library like you never have. Find a section you have never been in before an choose a book to take home, ask the librarian for a tour, or sit in on a book club. For little ones you can print out this free printable Library Scavenger Hunt sheet from my blog Simply Southern Sunshine and make it an adventure.
- Learn a new language. Between games and apps on tablets and computers, and resources like books and tapes at the library it doesn’t even need to cost a cent.
- Learn how to geocache. If you are not ready to hop in the car and start searching for caches you can encourage your child to create their own and find a place to hide it locally.
- Redecorate your room. This can be as simple as rearranging the furniture, turning over the quilt, or creating new art from craft supplies.
- Create a board game. Provide your child with poster board, rulers, markers, stickers, and small toys for playing pieces. Tell them to use their imagination to create a theme, action cards, and end purpose for the game, then play with them when they are done.
- Make a comic. Print a template or let them freestyle, this is one of my sons favorite activities.
- Build a national landmark from Lego blocks. Help your child peruse the internet for a famous united states landmark to recreate. Bonus points if it is somewhere you have been or are going this summer.
- Identify 20 backyard birds. You can work this by making a list of 20 common birds and check them off as you see them, or you can make list or draw birds that you see in your yard or local park until you reach 20- my kids will do this the whole summer!
- Plan the family camping trip. Let them help with the family camping trip by letting them make lists for what needs to be packed, checking out tents and sleeping bags for holes, and packing non-perishables in a tote. They won’t even consider it work.
- Visit every local park for 20 miles. This will require you and of course your driving skills, or you can make it a family affair and get on your bikes for as many as you can go to.
- Sew a simple pattern. Let your child create a doll dress from scraps or pick up a simple pattern for shorts, a skirt, or purse and let them trace and cut the pattern, pin, and sew a simple project like one of these.
- Make a backyard game. Use found items- scrap lumber, chicken wire, pool noodles, etc… to create a giant game board or obstacle course with human playing pieces.
- Play the hand you're dealt. A simple deck of cards can offer endless fun from go fish to solitaire or a house of cards and card tricks.
- Make a fairy garden. A quick trip to the craft store, dollar tree, or your own backyard can provide your child with materials to create fairies, accessories, and fairy furniture. Check out this Tea Party Fairy Garden.
- Create custom jewelry. Create jewelry for family and friends with string, beads, pop top tabs, charms, folded magazine pages, whatever your preferred medium is. Thinking of and creating for others is a great way to take your mind off your own boredom.
- Go fly a kite. Literally, they can use a store bought one or make their own like the one here in this How to Make a Kite tutorial.