I really enjoy writing things out - to do lists, goals, groceries...anything. So after a few days of my kids saying that they were bored, I pulled out a huge calendar and asked them what they wanted to do. What was their idea of a "fun" day?
My now 6 year old said things like visiting a bounce house or going to the library. (A boy after my own heart!)
My 4 year old said she wanted to go to Chuck E Cheese and Hawaii. (Also, just like mommy!)
We sat together for a while and brainstormed some fun things we could do to pass the sometimes long summer days.
I'm happy to share our list with anyone that can use it but just so you don't get overwhelmed, I'll only post a week at a time. :) (We came up with over 60 days worth of fun and silly things to try.)
A few tips first...
- My kids are 6, 4 and almost 2 so most of these ideas are geared towards those age groups. However, ALL of these ideas can be amended for older kids too.
- As with any activity, parental supervision is a must and only increases the fun. (That's my disclaimer for all you lawyer types out there.)
- I've divided up our ideas into three categories: Activities, Craft Projects and Food Creations.
- Most suggestions won't require any prep or planning ahead but sometimes a trip to Michael's or your local craft store might be in order.
Okay, here we go. Five days worth of fun...
DAY 1 -
Activity: Build an obstacle course in your backyard (or house, depending on the heat).
Directions: Use things around your home (bikes, slides, hula hoops, balls, tunnels, etc.) to create a massive obstacle course. Build it together, play in it together and for extra fun, set a timed goal for how fast your child needs to get through it (according to their age). Offer a fun reward (like an ice cream cone or sticker) when they beat the goal...and make sure they beat it. :)
DAY 2 -
Activity: Find a local lake or pond and feed the ducks/fish
Directions: Gather your old or stale bread for this outing and then relax under a shady tree. (For some reason there are always hot dog buns in our home. We don't even eat them that much but the buns appear anyway. Weird. So that's what I always take for the ducks.)
DAY 3 -
Food Creation: Make Kabobs
Directions: Allow your kids to choose the veggies and meat that go on the skewers. Then let them help with the assembly, making sure to watch their little fingers on those pointy skewers. They just might be more adventurous in tasting new vegetables if they get to choose and help make dinner. While dad is BBQing, make some fun kabobs as well using their favorite fruits. And don't forget dessert. Use marshmallows, brownie squares, anything you can poke a hole in. Lot's of fun!
DAY 4 -
Craft Project: Crayon Rubbing
Directions: Go on a hunting trip around your house and yard. Have your kids carry a basket or bag to fill with their treasures. Find things like sandpaper, yarn, leaves, fabric, coins, etc. Then place the items between two sheets of paper and using the side of a crayon, color over each one until you can see the object clearly. (Not sure why, but my kids love doing this!)
DAY 5 -
Activity: Shaving Cream
Directions: Buy inexpensive shaving cream and spray a pile onto an outside, washable surface. Roll up their sleeves and let them goop it up. For extra fun make separate piles and add a few drops of food coloring. Sit back and watch what they create. Be sure to have your video camera on hand to capture the funny faces they make when they squeeze it through their fingers for the first time. If you're like me, you'll be cringing the entire time but trust me, they'll love it. Warning: This is messy but washes off easily with water.
There you have it. I'll be doing these things with my kids too. Let me know if you try them and if your kiddos enjoyed them. I'll post more of our ideas next Thursday.
Have fun! :)