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Summer Fun Ideas For Kids and Parents -- Part 2

Whether you work from home, are a stay-at-home parent, or work outside the house, you need practical ideas to keep your kids busy, particularly during the summer months. Otherwise, they may end up getting too much screen time, which is not good for their health (mental or physical).

Check out this list things you and your kids can do to fight off summertime boredom. Don't let your kids have all the fun—many of these activities are fun for the whole family to share. So join in!  Whether you turn this list into your summer bucket list, or you just pick a few of your favorites, you will make some great memories. The key is to slow down and enjoy the summer months with your family.

Get Artsy

  • Get out those craft kits you've been saving, or try one of these artsy activities.
  • Collect rocks and paint them. Turn them into pet rocks, garden ornaments, or gifts for family members.
  • Create a summer mural. Stretch a long piece of white craft paper across a wall in the basement or garage and create a family mural. Include hand-drawn, painted, or colored pictures of your summer activities. Work on it all summer, adding to it little by little. Hold an "unveiling" party for relatives at the end of the summer.
  • Decorate your walkways with chalk. Use regular sidewalk chalk or make your own using cornstarch, distilled vinegar, and food coloring.
  • Keep a summer sketch diary. Take turns sharing your sketches at the end of the summer.
  • Hold a photoshoot. Plan different outfits and poses and take pictures outside or around town. Older kids and teens can then edit the photos on a computer.
  • Make music. Make your own instruments or play traditional ones. Record your musical creations if you want.
  • Make playdough creations. Make your own playdough to mold into creative shapes. Then rip them up and do it again.
  • Play with clay. Then bake your creations to make them permanent.
  • Press summer flowers. Make a pressed flower picture with waxed paper.
  • Put on your own dramatic performance. Write a script, make costumes, or just do a little improv.
  • String beads. Beading projects can be as simple or complex as you choose.

Have Fun and Get Moving Outdoors!

All you need is a little space and sunshine for these activities that get kids moving.

  • Build a water blob or a slip 'n slide. Use plastic sheeting and duct tape to create large plastic pillows (or water blobs) filled with water. Set the blobs up in the yard and allow kids or teens to hop from one blob to another. Or use a plastic tarp and a garden hose to create your own slip 'n slide.
  • Build an obstacle course in the backyard. Pretend to be America Ninja Warriors and see how quickly you can each get through the course.
  • Climb trees together. Of course, do this only if the kids are big enough; and you are brave enough.
  • Fly a kite. Make your own kite or buy one at the dollar store. Spend a few hours flying it in an open field.
  • Go fishing. In many states, kids can drop a line in without a license.
  • Have a bubble gum bubble blowing contest. See who can blow the largest bubble without it popping.
  • Have a water balloon baseball game. Use a plastic bat, a bucket of water balloons, and old towels as bases and you are all set.
  • Have a water gun race. Put a hole in the bottom of two or more plastic cups and thread string or yarn through each one. Secure the ends of the yarn to a starting point and an ending point. Use full squirt guns to shoot water into the cups so that they race along the string. The first cup to the finish line is the winner.
  • Hold a hula hoop contest. See which family member can hula the longest.
  • Jump rope. Chant jump rope rhymes.
  • Make good use of nearby parks. Go to your local park's website. Print the schedule of activities and hang it on your refrigerator.
  • Paddle a canoe. Look for a local park that offers canoe rentals and spend a little time out on the water.
  • Play balloon tennis. Gather a balloon, paper plates, and painting sticks and you are all set. Attach the sticks to the paper plates to make the paddles and use the balloon as the ball. This is a great activity for indoor or outdoor play.
  • Play croquet on the lawn. And try boccie too.
  • Play HORSE. Use your basketball hoop or one at the park to play a challenging game of HORSE. With little ones, set up a mini basketball net next to the real one.
  • Play miniature golf. Go to a local course or build your own course on the driveway.
  • Play outside in the rain. Smell the rain on the pavement; splash in puddles; make mud pies.
  • Run in the yard. Play kickball, frisbee, tag, and other outdoor games. You could even create your own summer Olympics.
  • Set up a badminton net. Have a family badminton tournament or use the net to play volleyball with a beach ball.
  • Take a hike. Choose a route near your house or take a drive to a more distant park.
  • Take bike rides for fun. Either leave from your own house or drive to biking trails.
  • Teach the kids to skip stones. Turn it into a competition.

Watch for more ideas next week.

(Partially reprinted from verywellfamily.com)

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