Discovering Cheap Summer Outdoor Activities For Kids
Having fun with your kids this summer
should not be a hassle or expensive. You have many options in your own
backyard or nearby parks or recreational areas. Make a summer of fun
your kids will remember forever.
When the summer heat is getting to you, consider water fun on your own
property. Set up a cheap kiddie pool, a slip and slide, or a sheet of
plastic, or even a regular sprinkler and let the kids run through it.
Invite their friends over to play and provide an easy-to-eat treat like
popsicles. Decorate your driveway or sidewalk with wet footprints or
handprints. Play with squirt guns or spray bottles. Have a water balloon
fight. Blow bubbles. Make mud pies. Play in the rain. Wash the car and
spray the kids with the hose. Let them get you wet, too.
In the cool of morning, evening or on moderate
weather days, have a day to enjoy nature. You could call it a nature hike. Visit
a walking path at a local park or find a new trail to hike. A nature hike can be
just a walk or it can be more than that. Think of off-roading a little bit. What
kinds of rocks, leaves, plants and flowers can the kids find? Have them use a
bag to store their favorites. When you get back home, go online and research the
names of the plants you collected. Here are some more ideas for fun with nature:
take pictures of nature with a camera. Take the kids to a scenic area with a set
of watercolors and ask them to paint what they see. If you live close to the
ocean or lake, pack a lunch, sunscreen, drinking water and some beach toys and
go there. Spend the day digging in the sand, building sandcastles and searching
for seashells. There are all kinds of ways of interacting with nature, like
planting a vegetable or flower garden together. Visit a pick-your-own fruits
farm. Instead of just having a picnic lunch at the brightest time of day, try
having a sunset picnic at a park or beach. On the other hand, get up early, pack
breakfast, and have a sunrise breakfast. Walk barefoot in the grass and pick the
wildflowers, if it is allowed. Do some cooking outside on a grill or a campfire,
or just toast marshmallows. Pitch a tent, perhaps even in your own backyard, and
sleep outside. The moon, stars and planets are nature, too.
When thinking of summer activities for the kids there are always all kinds of
games and sports. You do not have to join a team or class because they can get
expensive, but if you have the resources and interest in pursuing that path, ask
the kids if they would like to learn a new sport or activity. The summer is a
great time to try something new without the commitment that often comes with
starting it during the school year. Go for a bicycle ride around the
neighborhood. Teach the kids some jump rope rhymes from your own childhood.
There is hopscotch, too. Plan a scavenger hunt or a treasure hunt. For a
scavenger hunt, all you need to do is create a list of twenty or so items that
are frequently found outdoors in your area. Pass out the list to each of the
kids. The first person or team to find everything, or the most items, and wins a
small prize. For a treasure hunt leave clues around the house or yard, with each
clue leading to the next clue, until they reach the treasure, maybe a snack or
small prize. There are many more ideas for outdoor sports and games, like
playing kickball with the neighborhood kids. Fly kites. Compete in a
three-legged or other race. Create an obstacle course. Play freeze tag. Build
paper airplanes and have a flying contest.
With some help from your kids, you may come up with many more ideas. Water,
nature, and sports and games are great sources of cheap and healthy
entertainment. The summer time is a great time to be outdoors, but please
remember the sunscreen, hats and monitoring the amounts of sun exposure. Older
kids with later bedtimes may even be able to enjoy many of these activities
after the sun goes down.