Start thinking about summer activities for kids long before school lets out. Warmer weather means the kids will want to be out-of-doors as much as possible. At times, it's fun to plan something new to make outside time more interesting.
Summer activities for kids do not need to be complicated. Some activities take only minutes to set up and provide lots of entertainment. Check out this section for the easiest ways to have fun outdoors.
Have the children sit in a circle outside and close their eyes. Have them tell you the sounds they hear. If you live in a town like mine, there should be plenty of sounds to identify. Examples: neighborhood children playing, birds singing, dogs barking, cars driving by, construction equipment, train whistles, the wind, etc.
Make a Balancing Board
We used a board roughly 8 inches wide and 6 feet long. Place a landscaping block (or anything else you have handy that is sturdy) under each end and you have a balancing board. Make sure the board is low to the ground. Some children will get quite courageous on the board and you don’t want anyone falling very far. Supervise closely. Let them practice walking, hopping, standing on one foot, etc.
One of the easiest summer activities for kids is getting out the sidewalk chalk and letting the kids draw on both the sidewalk and driveway. The canvas is large enough for several kids. You can teach them to play games like hopscotch or simply let them draw a giant “masterpiece”
Take a Nature Walk
Take the kids on a walk (in a park or around the back yard) to see how many nature items they can find. Look for bugs, birds, small animals, different types of trees, flowers or weeds.
Digging for Treasure
Spray paint some rocks gold and bury them in your sandbox. Let the kids use sandbox shovels or their hands to find the buried treasure. Make sure there are plenty of rocks so all the children have a chance of finding one.
*Two months after we used this activity, a child playing in the sandbox found a gold rock we had missed the first time. That sent all the kids into a digging frenzy, but alas, no more gold rocks were found.
Do you have a tent you use for camping? Set it up in the backyard. Kids will find a multitude of uses for their “fort”. It will become a large playhouse that will foster imagination in so many ways. Our tent was set up nearly year round. My kids and daycare kids used it as a way to play “house”, and as a place to cool off when the summer sun got too hot. They also played simple card games and sometimes had snack time inside it.
*This was one of my kid's favorite outdoor activities. With all the use our tent got, I’m amazed it lasted as long as it did. It was still in use when my kids were teenagers and were dragging small TV’s and extension cords into it. Oh, the good old days …
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