How do you plan to spend your summer? Many parents today have to worry about their kids spending way too much time in front of screens. The average household has more than five devices (televisions, phones, tablets, computers…), and kids as young as toddlers know how to work tablets and smartphones. To prevent the dreaded ‘summer slide, ‘ where kids forget the things that they learned in school during the previous school year, why not try to keep them active and engaged? You can work in summer ‘lesson plans,’ just by having ordinary and fun summer activities planned. The kids will be none the wiser, and you’ll feel great, knowing that you’re doing your part to keep the kids involved in learning all summer long.
You can easily create a fun family bucket list for the summertime. Ask everyone in the family to contribute some ideas of ‘must-do’ summer activities. Try to steer away from things like big trips that might wind up costing a lot of money, and instead focus on smaller family activities that cost little to no money. Here are a few ideas to get you started…
Get wet. That’s right- make some plans to splash and play this summer. You can partake in a number of different water activities. Set up a sprinkler in your backyard. You probably remember jumping through the sprinkler when you were a kid- why not offer your own kids the same fun experience? You can also look for water tables for young toddlers to splash and play in. These allow kids to stand, and splash in the water without getting their entire bodies wet. Some tables include an area for water and another for sand. Inflatable pools have become very popular in recent years. You can buy one that’s big enough for the whole family to lounge in and enjoy together on particularly hot summer days. Big Lots is a great place to find all sorts of fun toys and activities for outdoor water play this summer. Sign up at Big Lots and get a $5.00 coupon when you spend $15.00.
Have a family cookout, complete with smores! Why not pitch a tent in the backyard and make your own family campsite? You’ll have all of the amenities of home (like running water), and you’ll be able to camp in a convenient and free location. Go the whole nine yards and set up sleeping bags under the stars. You can grill hot dogs over the fire (or use your grill), and then close up the evening by making smores over the fire, while listening to music or re-telling favorite family stories. Don’ forget your camping supplies. Get free shipping on orders of $99.00+ at Camping World when you stock up on the essentials.
Other fun ideas include:
Make a backyard fort or reading area
Plant a garden
Set up a Little Free Library in your neighborhood
Put together a service project
Make lemonade and root beer floats
Have an all night movie marathon
Go to the beach or the lake
Go to a theme park
Take a road trip
Go to the zoo
Go on a mission trip or serve in your community
Organize a school supplies drive
Gi hiking and/or geocaching
Enter a marathon
Wash your cars the old fashioned way
Take a picnic to the park
Don’t let the summer slip on by before you make your bucket list. Even if you can’t do one thing each day, make an effort to try to do one thing from the list each week. Your family will enjoy spending time together, and you’ll be making a lot of wonderful memories in the process.