Summer Freebies & Almost Free Activities for Bored Little Ones
It’s summer and the children are bored! If you are a work at home mom, dad, or even grandparents. It’s hard to know what to do with children during the summer. Here’s some ideas that work well with the under 12 set.
Library Book Club-Not only can the children improve their imagination by reading, but the library offers incentives and often in-house programs.
Free Movies- Many local theaters will offer morning children’s movies one day a week during the summer. This is a time the theater wouldn’t normally be open. Look in your paper or online for details. Many parks also have outdoor movie night.
Museums-Most museums have one free day. You’ll have to research the ones around you. (Indianapolis Museum of Art is free, except on Monday when it is closed.)
Parks- There are usually trails and playground equipment.
Picnic-Eat lunch outside
DVDS- You can borrow them free at the library. Get Christmas movies and have a Christmas in July marathon.
The Sprinkler- Introduce the children to the old fashion fun of running through the sprinkler. At the most, it will only be on for 20 minutes. You can also put it close to anything that needs watering.
Sidewalk Chalk- This is a dollar at the Dollar Tree. If you have a budding artist, this will entertain for a long time.
Time Capsule- All you need is an old popcorn tin or even a good size coffee can with a lid. The children find items they think represents right now. It can be items they’ve cut out of the newspaper. Have the children write letters to their future self. Make predictions. Seal the can with tape and bury it.
Bubbles- If you don’t have any, these are also a dollar at the Dollar Tree. Make nighttime bubbles by cutting open glow sticks and pouring the liquid into the bubbles. Glow sticks are also available at the Dollar Tree
Board Games- You may have to supervise a few before the kids get the hang of it.
Outside Games- This can be anything from catchers to bike riding. Teach the kids a few of the games you loved when you were a kid.
4-H- This club is more popular in rural areas, but it kept my children busy for a couple weeks preparing their project they should have been working on all year for the 4-H fair.
Cooking- Let the children to help you cook or allow them to think up a meal. I will admit the peanut butter sandwich & pudding banquet was decent.
Create Books- Small ones can draw a book with crayons or cut images out of magazines or newspaper. This does wonders for the imagination. Older children can write or type their stories.
Science Experiments- Here a site that uses items you probably already have at home.
Gardening- A packet of seeds is all you need to start.
Exercise-it is important to set goals. Your child might want to try to walk a mile. Start with increments to build up endurance and a sense of accomplishment.
Have a Yard/Garage/Tag Sale- This is a sneaky way to get things cleaned out and earn a little spending money for all the things that aren’t free.
Puppet Theater- Socks without partners and a permanent marker equal sock puppet. Remember you do have to watch the show.
Summer Camp- Many scouts and church organizations have camp scholarship for those who can’t afford to pay. You do need to apply early.
Vacation Bible School- If you’re okay with the idea of church this is a great summer activity. Some are better than others are. The emphasis should be on fun as opposed to forcible conversion.
Once you start thinking outside the television box, you’ll be surprised what you’ll discover. J
Read your local paper or website. My kids entered a free riding lawnmower contest with the prize being a trip to Disneyworld. They didn’t win, but a neighbor kid did. They still had fun.