Keeping Kids Busy During the Summers

When I was a kid we didn’t have to worry about staying busy because we knew everyone in the neighborhood and the neighbors behind that street and so on and son like that old shampoo commercial from the 1970s (“And she told two friends and so on and so on”).

But today’s parents have more challenges since so many kids get bored easily, being inundated with numerous video games and computers in most households.

One mom with kids recommends running your own “Camp Mom” by networking with other mothers in the area for kids to do activities together from art to outdoorsy things.

Join a neighborhood pool so your kids can take advantage of lessons or a swim team.

Plan a weekly field trip to free or low-cost activities around town.

Let your kids write down their own possibilities of summer fun, take pictures, make posters, crafts, hold a talent show, or finger paint.

Have a different theme every day centered on fun things to do, stage a play or puppet show, collect items to donate to a shelter or for another cause, or make macaroni art.

If you have extra money consider hiring an older child as a mother’s helper to assist you throughout the day or play office or school.

Get out of the house early and take a nature walk with the kids while the weather is cool. Also nature centers offer great summer programs for kids as do libraries.

If you have a kiddie pool and a swing set (or a neighbor does) fill it with water from the garden hose and put the legs of the set’s slide into the water, letting the kids slide down into a little pool of fun. We did this for hours when I was a kid. Play store and teach kids how to price items.

Play outdoor games like “One, Two, Three Red Light” and “Freeze Tag” and at night collect lightning bugs in jars.

Visit the neighborhood kids and ride bikes together or go exploring. Go to a go-kart park or visit a dog park and take the dog.

If your kids have outdoor skates, go skating in someone’s basement. On rainy days you can also ride bikes in basements if there’s lots of room.

Make collages of kids’ favorite activities, foods, or places.

Do easy kids’ recipes for breakfast or lunch.

Turn on the sprinkler and have the kids throw on their swimsuits, jumping in and out of the water.

Draw Hopscotch on the driveway or sidewalk, jump rope, play Hide n’ Seek.

Make a lemonade stand and sell refreshments to the neighborhood. Alert the neighbors ahead of time so they know to come by and bring their kids.

Wash the car in your swimsuits.

Teach arts and crafts to kids in the neighborhood.

Cut up fresh watermelon and have everyone enjoy it outdoors.

Don’t forget to build in time for yourself.

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