It's inevitable: How many years have you witnessed your kids get so excited for school to end but then the first day of summer arrives and you're already hearing, "I'm sooooooo bored!"? Not to mention, with all the accessible ways for kids to get screen time these days, you worry they might not get enough physical activity and social interaction.
Well, let's make this year different! Be prepared this summer with lots of fun ideas to keep the kids active and motivated for the entire season!
1) Popsicle Sticks
Sometimes DECIDING what to do is the hardest part about keeping busy when you're bored. So, take the "decision" out of the equation and create something that does the deciding for you! Before school is out, sit down with the kids and discuss the things they would like to do this summer.
Then start creating! Have fun with your sticks ... decorate them with markers or color code them to coordinate with different categories. Create a cute jar or canister to store your decision-making popsicle sticks and set them out in plain sight so the kids can access them anytime boredom hits!
Kids will love the element of anticipation as they choose a stick that decides their activity for the day. This is also a winner for you because you'll love NOT being constantly asked for something to do!
2) Water Balloon Baseball
Yes, it's exactly what it sounds like! It only takes a few minutes to fill up a bundle of water balloons and dig out that old whiffle bat from storage. In no time, your kids will be laughing and splashing their days away. They can choose to take turns batting and pitching or play the full nine wet and wild innings!
3) Decorated Rock Tic Tac Toe
Tic Tac Toe is an oldie but a goodie and you've got the power to spice it up a little! Take the kids on a walk and pick out some nice, smooth river rocks. Or simply grab a bag at your local dollar store.
Talk about different themes you can paint on your rocks ... maybe your kids are obsessed with dinosaurs? Or what about their favorite superhero's emblem? The sky is the limit! Encourage your kids to imagine backstories of their rocks or give them names as they play. Suddenly, such a simple game has become a summer favorite!
4) Bottle Ring Toss
Bring the carnival to your backyard with your own custom ring toss game! Choose a fun theme like circus colors or something similar to the vintage style you see here. All you need are some clear, empty bottles, chalk paint (it adheres to the glass better than other paints), and a wooden box to hold the bottles in.
For the rings, you can use wooden embroidery hoops or simply cute pieces of rope and tape the two ends together. This is a great game that you can completely customize to your liking - from the box, to the color of the bottles, to even the rules of the game!
5) Painted Potato Sack Races
With a simple burlap potato sack and some craft paint, you can turn this backyard classic into a personalized extravaganza! Use the paint to make funny faces, mermaid and shark tails, desserts (our favorite option!), or sports team logos on your burlap sacks. To amp up the competition a little, create handmade trophies or medals for the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners.
Next, you and the kids can come up with a racetrack or obstacle course for your potato sack race. Invite the neighbors over and have a blast racing each all around the yard. Store your burlap sacks and remember to take them to picnics and BBQ's or anywhere else that could use a little boost of fun!
6) Ice Block Treasure Hunt
For those extra hot days, your kids will love digging away through an ice block to get to their special treasures. Not to mention, this activity will keep them busy for hours because after they unveil their toys, they'll want to play with them!
You can find a variety of small toys from your local dollar store or even use the forgotten toys at the bottom of the toy box. Another fun idea might be to add some coins in their ice block for them to put in their piggy bank or use when the ice cream truck rolls by! If you have multiple kids, try customizing each ice block to their liking with different colors and items.
Some materials you'll need are:
- a plastic container
- small toys ( plastic animals, bouncy balls, shells, coins, plastic rings, etc.)
- ice cube tray
- food coloring (optional)
- tools for getting the items out (spoons, small hammer, paintbrushes, spray bottles, salt, etc.)
First, fill an ice cube tray with water and food coloring and freeze. Once your cubes are frozen, fill your plastic container about a quarter full of water. Add a handful of toys and some of the ice cubes, then freeze the container. Repeat the process until your container is a full, solid block stocked full of frozen goodies.
Remove the ice block from the plastic container and let your kids have fun exploring and experimenting with the ice block and tools. Just be sure to keep close supervision while the kids use their tools ... but we think you'll want to witness all the fun anyway!
7) Scavenger Hunt
Encourage your kids to stretch their brains during their summer break and create a fun scavenger hunt for them! Nothing says adventure like figuring out clues and running around the yard looking for hidden items. It's a simple activity to plan and your kids will always have those childhood memories to look back on.
8) Firework Paintings
This art project is probably as simple as they come ... and the result always ends up beautiful!
What you'll need:
- Recycled toilet paper rolls
- Paper plates
- Large piece of paper or canvas
- Glitter (optional)
Start by cutting two-inch slits in the toilet paper rolls and fringe them out so they lie flat onto the tabletop. Use the other side of the toilet paper roll as a handle and dip them into the paint. Then simply smoosh the paint onto your paper or canvas and ... BOOM ... you've got your fireworks! Sprinkle some glitter on the wet paint for a little extra sparkle. Ooooooh! Ahhhhhhhhh!
We know the season can feel long, but once it's near the end you'll wonder where the summer went! Which is why it's so important to fill the days with fun, engaging activities to keep the kiddos busy. Give them a summer they'll never forget!
If the kids happen to get a little dirty during their summer escapades, we've got the perfect solution: hand them one of our adorable Pie Soaps 🥧when it's time for a shower and you'll never hear a single complaint from them!