School’s out and if your kids aren’t already involved in something to keep them occupied during the summer months, you can bet they’re most likely going to default to staying indoors all day, scrolling through social media. Convincing your kids to do more than just comment on friends’ posts, text and snap this summer can seem nearly impossible - especially if they aren’t already part of a club, group, or team that will keep them active and learning. Here are some ideas:
Start a Backyard Harvest Garden
If your kids like being outdoors and are the types who enjoy planting trees, teaching them about sustainability and starting a backyard herb garden could be fun. Ask them what types of veggies and fruits they like for their meals, find out what grows best in your local climate and make a backyard herb/produce garden the summer project for the family! It’ll give your kids something to do for the summer - and fresh, home grown produce and herbs for years to come!
Start a Small Business
Do your kids have an entrepreneurial spirit - but are not quite old enough for a summer job? Support their tendencies and have them work on it. Suggest that they make a lemonade stand, maybe start a dog walking business in the neighborhood (assisting them with soliciting only trusted neighbors as customers) or get them to clean out the garage and do a yard sale - (get creative and think of some other ideas). They’ll learn valuable skills about business and they’ll also be excited to make their own money for the summer!
Look up Local Events
Does your local library have free book readings? Maybe your local church has summer programs, or the nearby aquarium might have overnight stays and educational nature programs for kids. Maybe there’s a summer yoga or dance event for kids - whatever your kids might be into, your community is bound to have events - many times for free - for kids. Do your research, you’ll be surprised what you find!
Send them to Summer Camp
If they’re old enough to attend a summer camp, send them! Look into types of camps that cater to what they’re interested in. If they love the great outdoors, a classic outdoorsy summer camp that teaches kids nature survival skills, take them on hikes, features bike riding, kayaking, ziplining and more - get them all packed up with their summer camp essentials like a personalized tee or funky pair of leggings and send them off to have fun. If you’ve got kids who love marine wildlife, maybe sending them to a marine biology camp will be more their speed. If they’re into dance, gymnastics, horseback riding, basketball, martial arts, acting, etc - or if they are eager to learn any of these new disciplines- there are camps for all of those. If your kid is old enough to be a summer camp counselor - maybe having them take a summer job as one is an idea they’ll like!
Learn a New Language
Task your child to challenge themselves and learn a new language. This can be a summer project that can either be done for free or can be much more immersive, but will cost more. The free version is finding youtube videos and foreign movies or classic american movies, dubbed over in a foreign language. The levels of immersiveness and cost go up from there. You can hire a tutor, send them to take classes, or even find fully immersive language programs and send them abroad.
Other Summer Activity Ideas:
There are an endless amount of summer ideas - all it takes is some creativity. So next time your kid tells you “I’m bored. What is there to do?” You won’t draw any blanks; you’ll be fully prepped with an arsenal of summer fun activities you can shoot off.
- Bake cookies
- Have a pool day ( home pool, friend’s pool or community pool)
- Jump on a trampoline or play on a swing set or a tree house (if you have any of these)
- Play board games
- Go to the zoo or aquarium
- Go see a movie
- Go play mini golf
- Go skating/rollerblading
- Go fishing or camping
- Go bike riding
- Do some arts & crafts
- Go to a local park
- Run some improv scenes
- Do an at-home water park with a slip n slide, water balloons and water guns
- Build a fort