Although your children are likely looking forward to some rest and relaxation this summer, they’re going to require a steady stream of at-home entertainment as well.
It’s a fact. Kids can only handle so much downtime before echoes of boredom will reverberate throughout your home: “I’m bored,” “There’s nothing to do,” “What can I do?” “Will you play with me?” Sound familiar?
Not to worry! We’ve got some simple solutions for keeping your kiddos entertained until the school bell rings in the fall. Following are eight exciting activities to help banish their boredom this summer:
1. Bring out their inner pastry chef
Children typically jump at the chance to bake—or, at the very least, enjoy their culinary creations. Plus, it’s like a summertime math and science lesson… measuring quantities, watching chemical reactions. Not a baker? Not a problem! Start with an easy boxed cake mix and a container of organic, gluten-free frosting and let them decorate with berries, nuts, chocolate chips, shredded coconut and any other toppings they desire.
2. Set up an indoor scavenger hunt
Kids love a good challenge, and what better way to test their problem-solving skills than with an indoor scavenger hunt? Jot down creative clues on small slips of paper or index cards and hide them throughout your home. The final clue should lead to a small yet exciting “treasure.”
Who doesn’t enjoy an afternoon picnic? Have your children help you plan a menu, shop for ingredients and prepare and package the meal. Then grab the food and a large blanket and head to their favorite park. Want to stay closer to home? Enjoy a picnic lunch right in your backyard. Plus, there are so many health benefits to eating outside!
4. Paint a rock garden
Have your kids gather rocks from around your yard (or purchase a bag of stones from a local craft store) and grab paint, glue, glitter, ribbon, googly eyes and any other embellishments you happen to have on hand. After they decorate the rocks, your children can “plant” their mini masterpieces in a rock garden or use them as paperweights.
5. Host a driveway decorating contest (with DIY chalk paint)
Combine equal parts corn starch and water and mix thoroughly. Pour the mixture into several small containers or spray bottles, and add a few drops of food coloring to each. Shake the bottles well and give them—along with some paint brushes—to your kiddos and let the competition commence! If you only have one child to occupy, give him or her several “art assignments” to complete within a specified time period.
6. Encourage entrepreneurship with a lemonade stand
Help your children establish their very first business this summer—a lemonade stand! You’ll need a hot day, a small table, chairs, paper or poster board, markers, biodegradable cups and, of course, lemonade. Aid your kids in determining the cost per cup and creating their marketing materials (a.k.a. a sign, fliers). Then fill a pitcher and hang out nearby while they sell, sell, sell!
7. Teach them classic outdoor games
Want to relive your youth while bonding with your kiddos? Show them how it’s done with classic outdoor games like hopscotch, tag, hide-and-seek and red light, green light. Can’t recall the rules? A quick online search will refresh your memory.
8. Yard camping
Spend an evening under the stars by pitching a tent in your very own yard. You and your children can enjoy all the fun of camping without having to pack, drive, and worry about bears or going to the bathroom in the woods! Don’t forget the graham crackers, chocolate and marshmallows for s’mores. Weather not cooperating? Set up the tent in your living room instead!