No more homework, no more books, no more teacher’s dirty looks! Ok, all but the last one because the kids had some pretty amazing teachers this year! School’s officially out, now what!?! It’s the last day of school and the kids are super excited for a bit of freedom and lots of relaxing this summer! While they will be in day camp for a couple of the weeks, I was a little panicked about what to do with them for the next two months, so I took control of the situation!!
I’m partnering up with some pretty awesome moms and we’re going to run our very own DIY summer camp for the kids! How cool! And the kids get to meet up with their friends a couple times a week! We came up with a bunch of ideas to keep them busy, keep them off their iPads and gaming all day long and make sure they’re not bored! Plus it’ll be fun and they might even learn a few things!
Here are some of the ideas we came up with!
- Amazing Race Day
What kid doesn’t love scavenger hunts? And this could be a super fun and easy way to get the kids to learn about Geography and practice their reading too! This can be done at home, in the backyard, but would be super awesome if you have a park close by. Check out the Less than Perfect Life of Bliss Amazing Race parties for some ideas and for some free printables too! Also check out this World Geography Trivia for Kids for some great questions to include in your Amazing Race scavenger hunt!
- Mad Scientist Day
It’s always been really important to me that kids are also exposed to science and that it’s fun for them! I’ve rounded up a couple sites that offer up some pretty cool science experiments that you can do right at home. And since it’s summer, skip the mess inside and take the science lab outdoors. Check out The Artful Parents Best Kids Science Experiments to Try at Home and also the Rediscovered Families Experiments!
To really have the theme come alive you need to be a Mad Scientist too! Throw on a lab coat and some goggles and check out this great Mad Science printable party package by This Party of Mine on Etsy that you can use for any decorations and labels.
- Beach Party Dance Party
This one is another pretty easy pone that the kids will love. It may not be overly educational but it will definitely get them moving and having lots of fun! Pick up some Hawaian Leis, beach balls, hula hoops and beach decorations from the dollar store and get a playlist ready for lots of fun dancing in the backyard! Grab a pool noodle for the limbo, some fun hats to take them through YMCA, and why not teach them the Macarena. It’s the latest thing in our house apparently! For more dance party ideas, check out Mom Junction’s Fun Dance Games and Activities! You can also check out these Free Party Printables and this Kid Friendly Playlist!
- Bike Camp Day
Another easy one! Get out the kids bikes and their helmets and go on a biking adventure! Find a trail close by if the kids are older or head to your nearest track! You’d be surprised how much they love to go round and round! When they’re bored of that check out these Fun Bike Activities that the Kids Activities Blog came up with!
- Mini Top Chef Cooking Camp
I don’t know about your kids but mine love to cook and be in the kitchen with me! Even when I ask them what we should watch on TV, a lot of the time they want to watch Food Network, and in particular any cooking challenges. So what better way to entertain them than their very own Mini Top Chef day! For our cooking challenge we’re splitting the kids into teams and each group will be making a different part of the meal – appetizer, main course, and of course dessert. You can get them to make easy things like fruit skewers or salad, pizzas, and smores. Or you can get them to come up with the menu too and get them to do the work from making the grocery list, shopping with you and even making their own paper aprons and chef hats! For more easy kids recipe inspiration check out The Taylor House 100 Crazy Easy Recipes for Kids. I also really love this ready for you Kids Creative Cooking Challenge!
- All about Nature
Get the kids outside and teach them a bit about the nature around us! We’re lucky that we live by the lake and the bluffs. Take the kids hiking and give them some fun activities along the way to help them learn about plants and wildlife along your route. Get them to complete a Nature Scavenger Hunt, a Nature Journal or Nature Crafts.
- Lego Camp
Shhh, don’t tell the kids, but lego is a great way for them to learn some math skills! It’s a fun way to learn about math, building, architecture and engineering. If your kids love Lego check out these free printable Lego Math Challenge Activity Cards and this Lego Challenge Calendar to help you set up your camp!
- Outdoor art
Most kids love to do some kind of artwork and how fun would it be to do outdoors. Think of it as a kids version of “Paint Night” but outside, without the mess! You can pick up supplies like mini easels, paints, brushes and smocks at your local Dollar store. And if they’re not into paint, try out some summer crafts or modeling clay. For some fun summer themed ideas, try Pineapple Finger Painting, Make Your Own Windchimes, and for the adventurous Watergun Painting.
- Mini Olympics
Get the kids active outside by setting up a kids Olympics in your backyard. Check out these KC Edventures great ideas on the activities you can run at and the activities Life as Mama came up with. And make sure to get them to wear their favourite country colours too!
- Space Camp
Aside from taking the kids to the local Planetarium and Science Centre, you can also teach them all about Space right at home. Check out how to set up your own DIY Space Camp. And then when it gets dark head outside to look at the stars, and planets too! One of the things we love to do is sit out on the deck every night and see what stars and planets we can find. We downloaded this great app called SkyView Lite that helps you navigate the sky as you stargaze!
Ok, I feel I need to stop or the list could really go on and on! I was also thinking Magic Camp and Pirate Camp but I had to stop somewhere! What we’ve figured out is we’re all pretty resourceful and can give the kids a super fun summer with loads of activities right at home! And trust me the local Dollarama and Pinterest are our friends for this summer experiment!
There are also some other fun activities you can do with the kids that aren’t necessarily “camp” related. Get them to Create their Own Storybook all about their summer! Then they can exchange it with a friend at the end of the summer. It’s a fun way to encourage reading and writing over the summer break. Another similar option is to have them be a pen pal with a friend who is going away for the summer. It’s a great way to keep in touch and also encourage reading and writing. And you can even get them to try it out on email! Finally talk to them a bit about making their own history. Have them create a time capsule that they will open in 5, 10, maybe even 20 years!
Hope I gave you some ideas for how to keep your kids busy this summer! And wish us luck! Awesome Mom Summer Camp starts next week! I’m excited…and I might need a big glass of Sangria at the end of each week! Let me know if you have any other ideas on how you’re entertaining your kids this summer!