Yay for Summer!
I don’t know about where you live, but here, when the sun comes out, everyone suddenly comes to life. Not sure what it is about a sunny day that fills people with motivation.. but anyway, with little kids, there are so many fun options when you can get out and about.
Our Summer bucket list goes a little bit like this:
- Water play! This comes in all varieties at our place on a hot day – a blow-up pool full of plastic balls, a sprinkler to run through, a hose on the trampoline, a hose in the garden to make lovely mud, buckets and pouring cups, buckets and bubbles, washing the car, washing the windows (mum washes, kids spread water), a water slide made of plastic sheeting and bubble bath, and a sand and water table with water wheels and bridges. Nothing like getting wet on a hot day to make the kiddies smile!
- The beach. We walk, explore rock pools and shells, build sand castles and water ways for the waves to fill, chase waves and throw balls, draw in the sand with big sticks to make patterns or play hangman and tic tac toe.
- Local parks. We like to find and explore new parks and nature reserves in our area – there are so many! Just a different playground can inject more fun into a quick play stop.
- Rock Hunts. Paint rocks and hide them in local parks. See if you can find rocks others have left. Start a rock collection and join a rock hunting page on Facebook to see who has found your rocks.
- RAK – random acts of kindness. Leave little gifts for other kids in the neighborhood, bake cookies for an old lady on your street, make cards of appreciation for people who have helped you, or help out with chores that need doing.
- Hidey holes. Pitch a tent, make a cubby out of sheets or boxes, put curtains around the trampoline, or build a real cubby house, for a shady place to play and read.
- Arts and crafts. So many options! Painting, drawing, making stamps from recycled rubbish or potatoes, paper crafts, marbling, making collages, string crafts, .. the list is endless.
- Baking. Green pancakes, decorated muffins and cakes, cut and iced biscuits, gingerbread men or houses, pastries or bread.. the kids love helping and making a mess!
- Bath fun. When cleaning up, we still like to have fun – bubbles, bath toys and water pipes, shaving foam, glow sticks in the dark, bath paints and coloured water!
- Picnics. There is something fun about eating outside, whether it’s on the trampoline, on a blanket or in the back of the car on a windy day.
- Nature walks. We like to explore different walks and tracks in our area.. there are waterfalls and quarries, boardwalks and Bush tracks. We bring something home – a rock, stick, feather – to paint or make art with!
- Rides and races. We get out all our wheeled things, including improvised ones, and race around the house. When that gets old, a ride to the local park works great.
- Music! We have a collection of instruments that only come out some days (when mum can handle the racket) and also like to make our own with pots and pans, glasses filled with water, cans and tins as drums, and elastic bands around baking tins. There are also great music programs near us for kids which are on one day a week, so much fun and no cleanup!
- Imaginative Play – there are loads of great ideas for getting the kids imagining up a storm – pretend they are a postman and make mailbag, letters, sorting trays and post boxes! Be a vet and fix all your soft toys. Be a dentist and check everyone’s teeth! Or print paper dolls or story stones and come up with funny stories.
- The library. Most city libraries have great kids sections these days, with toys and activities, and a reading day one a week for the kids.
- Animals. We have an animal park and a bird park near us, as well as a zoo not too far away. Or we have neighbours who sometimes drop their dog to us when they go away. Lots of fun for the kids.. and hopefully the dog, too!
- City events. We are always on the lookout for fun things happening in our city. Movies in the park, night markets, morning markets, open days at playgroups, opening events and sausage sizzles, Christmas parades and school fetes, international food days.. if it fits in with our schedule, we try to get out there! Sign up to a local events page on Facebook and get notified when things are on.
- Kids cafes. Or kid friendly cafes. All cafes are not equal in this regard! Find ones with playgrounds and play areas so everyone can enjoy an outing with a friend!
- Garden fun. Give the kids a section of veggie patch to call their own, and grow seeds and plants from cuttings. Improvise a little hothouse, build a plant tower, or create a strawberry patch. Make bird feeders and bird scarers. Make garden decor – painted rocks, fancy plant name signs, or beautiful outdoor art!
- Tiki tours. We love jumping in the car and seeing where we end up. We are lucky to live in an amazing place with heaps of options nearby.. beautiful beaches galore, cute country towns to explore, a nearby tourist town with cultural activities and a gondola, lakes for swimming and fishing, and hot pools.. all within an hour’s drive from home. Pack some snacks and a pillow each. Throw in some car games and toys. Stop for an ice-cream somewhere. 🙂 good times. Don’t forget the camera!
- Fun with friends! All of the above, but with friends or family to make things even more enjoyable! It only takes a little more planning to include others and intensify the fun. Take turns hosting in the yard or meet out there. And if mum is feeling brave, perhaps a sleepover;) Or not. HA.
Whatever you and your family like to do, get out amongst it! We’ve all earned a relaxing and fun Summer break 🙂
X Anna from Tea4Teacher