Each summer parents struggle with the task of finding something affordable and interesting for their kids to do. The good news is that there are hundreds of things available for kids to do during the summer, most of which will be fun and educational. I always wanted my kids to have fun everyday during the summer, and at the same time insert at least one learning experience into an activity.
Learn About a New Culture
One fun activity that your entire family can participate in is to learn about a new culture. For the entire summer have your child engage in activities that are about a new culture that is of interest to all of you. This culture can be related to your family’s heritage, to an ethnic group in your community or to any other culture that you wish.
Activities related to this option include:
(1) cooking foods from the selected culture
(2) learning a few phrases from the culture
(3) watching films from the culture
(4) decorating the house in cultural motifs
Make a Movie
Most families today have access to the equipment that can be used to make a movie. There are two main items that you will need:
- something that can record digital motion pictures, such as a video camera or a cell phone with a movie capture option
- video editing software, which can be found online for free or as a download from the company that manufactured your phone or camera
Ask your kids if they would like to capture video footage and then work as a family to write and edit a story.
Summertime is the perfect time to get outside and to explore your community. Riding a bicycle is a fabulous way to explore communities and to have fun as a family. Bike riding trails are the safest option for family bike rides, but older bicyclers can use bike lanes.
Baking for a Cause
Learning to cook is a skill that will produce a lifetime of benefits. Teaching your kids to bake is a great way to teach them about math, measurements, science and life skills. However, it can also be used as a way to help them to learn about helping others.
?For this activity, bake a selection of goodies to donate to a local homeless shelter, children’s home, hospital, nursing home or even to a local police station or firefighter station.
Write a Book About Your Family
For kids that have learned to read and write, ask your child to if they would like to write a book about their family. This book will document who is in the family, where the family came from, where the family has lived, and what each member of the family is like.
Explain that it will be a lot of fun interviewing different members. Tell them you will help them to write questions for the interview, if they want or need help.
At the end of the summer, together, edit the interviews and self-publish it for holiday gifts. Your family will love it!
Daydreaming during the school year is generally frowned upon, but during the summer it can be a great exercise for your mind. Your child can daydream with a purpose or have a free-flow of thoughts and images.
To daydream with a purpose select something to think about. This thought can be focused upon a challenge, the future, a story they would like to write or a vacation they would like to take. Then have your child find a quiet place where s/he can layback and just think about their topic. Tell them to let their mind take over and experience the ideas as they come.
I read someplace that Stephen Spielberg daydreamed a lot! Creativity, spontaneity, ingenious ideas… are all born while daydreaming.
Spend Time with Your Grandparents
Spending time with your grandparents is a great activity. During your time at their house or apartment talk to them about when they were your age, what it was like raising your mom or dad and what lessons they have learned during their lifetime. Record these conversations on a digital recorder, video tape or write them down in a journal.
Take photos and keep them as mementos.
Engage your children in finding things to do that would be of interest. Have them do a search on the internet, “fun free activities for kids near me”. This will also help them to learn how to plan and implement.