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203 Ideas for Summer Activities

May 15, 2014

It's all about R-E-S-P-E-C-T

Respect yourself, Respect others, Respect property, Respect learning


Have a safe and enjoyable summer.


Parents Corner: When you are on a tight budget, it can be hard to find interesting and challenging activities for our gifted children. However, with a little thought and sometimes just a little planning, we can find plenty of summer fun activities. Here are just a few extra suggestions.



  1. READ WITH YOUR CHILDREN, in the car, at home, on the steps, in the yard, at the park, on the swings, in the garage, anywhere is reading time. It benefits your children.
  2. Pick your own….whatever. Find a farm with blueberries, strawberries, tomatoes, flowers, etc., and get picking.
  3. Play outside in the rain. Smell the rain on the pavement; splash in puddles; make mud pies.
  4. Make your own rain. Douse everyone with the hose or sprinkler.
  5. Take family naps
  6. Have daily quiet time. Big kids need rest too. workathomemoms.about.com/od/workathomemomtips/qt/tip13.htm
  7. Cook out….frequently. Go beyond the burgers. Try veggies or fish. The kids might like them!
  8. Make ‘smores. Chocolate + marshmallow + graham cracker=summer.
  9. Camp out. First-timers, try backyard camping.
  10. Camp in. Put the sleeping bags on the floor and have a family slumber party.
  11. Stargaze. Invite friends and make a party of it. entertaining.about.com/cs/kidsparties/a/backyardsleepov.htm
  12. Catch lightening bugs. And then watch them flicker away into the night.
  13. Rearrange the furniture. Give the kids graph paper and have them draw out a plan first.
  14. Make your own pizza. Try this recipe workathomemoms.about.com/od/recipeskidscanmake/r/pizza.htm
  15. Invite friends over for a game night. Have a kids' games table and an adult one too.
  16. Go to the demolition derby. And expect to see some major crashes.
  17. See an air show. And hope for no crashes.
  18. Stop to smell the flowers. (Go to a botanical garden.)
  19. Talk to the animals. (Go to the zoo.)
  20. Get wet. (Go to a water park.)
  21. Play a word game. Think Scrabble, Boggle or Bananagrams.
  22. Play a card game workathomemoms.about.com/od/playingcards/Playing_Cards.htm
  23. Play a board game. Candyland, chess or Monopoly, depending on age and inclination.
  24. Make good use of nearby parks. Go to your local parks website, print the schedule of activities and tape it to the refrigerator.
  25. Pack a picnic workathomemoms.about.com/od/kidsactivitiesfamilyfun/tp/picnics.htm
  26. Start the back-to-school workathomemoms.about.com/od/changestransitions/tp/backtoschool.htm
  27. Get the summer homework done. Not exactly fun, but get it out of the way.
  28. Experiment with new hairdos. Let the kids try out not-permanent colors or braids. Or maybe a spiked look menshair.about.com/od/picturegalleries/ig/Short-Styles---Gallery-2/Men-s-Haircut---Red-Head.htm
  29. Dig in the sand at the beach. Doesn’t matter if it’s on the ocean, lake or bay.
  30. Set a goal and complete a home project. Find ways to let the kids help.
  31. Take an early morning bird walk. Choose the right field guide birding.about.com/od/birdingsupplies/a/bestguide.htm
  32. Grow vegetables. And then eat them.
  33. Grow flowers. And then arrange them.
  34. Let the kids cook dinner workathomemoms.about.com/od/kidsactivitiesfamilyfun/a/kmdn.htm
  35. Host the kids' friends for a sleepover. And the maybe your kids will be invited next…giving you a free evening.
  36. Go to a nearby museum that you’ve never been to before.
  37. Go to your favorite local museum…again.
  38. Go to a carnival or county fair. Eat cotton candy, fried dough or something really bad once this summer.
  39. Decorate your walkways with chalk. Better yet, make your own chalk babyparenting.about.com/od/summerfun/a/summer8.htm
  40. Take a hike. Choose a route near your house or take a drive to a more distant park.
  41. Plant a butterfly garden. Watch the butterflies flutter by.
  42. Make fresh lemonade video.about.com/southernfood/Homemade-Lemonade.htm
  43. Take road trip to a nearby city. Spend the night if you can or just make it a day trip.
  44. Show the kids science is fun. Try these experiments chemistry.about.com/b/2004/04/14/spring-break-activities.htm
  45. Go to a matinee. Find a bargain movie houses and pay less.
  46. Go to the drive-in. If there isn't one nearby, look for one near your vacation spot. Every kid should go to the drive-in at least once!
  47. Read a chapter book aloud. Or even go on and read a whole series together.
  48. Listen to a classic as an audiobook. Or try these newer audiobooks workathomemoms.about.com/od/kidsstuff/tp/bestaudiobooks.htm
  49. Teach the kids a game you haven’t played since you were a kid.
  50. Meet friends at the playground. Not groundbreaking, but always popular nonetheless.
  51. Visit a historic house. Kids will be amazed at what the old-timers lived without.
  52. Make ice cream. We use this recipe chemistry.about.com/cs/howtos/a/aa020404a.htm
  53. Use bikes as a mode of transit. Show the kids the way to the store or a friend’s.
  54. Take bike rides for fun. Either leave from your own house or drive to biking trails.
  55. Go fishing. In many states kids can drop a line in without a license.
  56. Paddle a kayak or a canoe. Or if you’re really adventurous try white water rafting.
  57. Jump rope. Chant these jump rope rhymes grandparents.about.com/od/projectsactivities/tp/Jump_Rope_Rhymes.htm
  58. Press summer flowers. Make a pressed flower picture familycrafts.about.com/cs/craftwithflowers/a/blprflow1.htm
  59. String beads. Try these safety pin bead designs familycrafts.about.com/library/bdspins/blbdspinsmmer.htm
  60. Blow bubbles. Make your own! babyparenting.about.com/cs/activities/a/bubbles.htm
  61. Play miniature golf. Can you make the last hole-in-one for a free game?
  62. Eat at the counter of a diner. And let the kids spin on the stools.
  63. Find a new place to play. Easy idea: Clear out the basement or garage. Complicated idea: Build a treehouse.
  64. Build a Lego castle. Clear off a table and make it a family project.
  65. Master a new skill together. Learn to juggle, play harmonica, do the hula hoop, etc.
  66. Teach the grandparents to use Skype . And show off your new skill. websearch.about.com/od/freedownloads/ig/Skype/
  67. Build a fort. Try pillows in the living room or cardboard boxes in the yard.
  68. Make fairy houses. Use moss, bark and leaves in a dwelling fit for Thumbelina.
  69. Write/illustrate a comic book. Make it a group effort or let everyone do their own.
  70. Oooh and ahh at fireworks. Might have to wait until July 4.
  71. Find a free concert near you.
  72. Fly a kite.
  73. Run in the yard. Kickball, wiffleball, Frisbee and tag will keep you moving.
  74. Visit a local farmers market. And feast on the fruits and veggies of the season.
  75. Create art with beach items. Check out these seahell crafts familycrafts.about.com/od/seashells/Sea_Shell_Crafts.htm
  76. Have breakfast in bed. Take turns being the server and the served.
  77. Play with clay. Then bake your creations to make them permanent.
  78. Make play dough creations. Then rip them up and do it again.
  79. Make paper airplanes. See whose goes the farthest.
  80. Join the library summer reading club. Parents can list all their books read over the summer too, but I doubt the library will give you a prize.
  81. Keep a sketch diary.
  82. Write in a journal. At the end of the summer share selections with each other about the highlights of the season.
  83. Teach the kids to skip stones.
  84. Make photo gifts online familyinternet.about.com/od/shoppingonline/fr/mypublisher_review.htm
  85. Take lessons together. Cooking, yoga, tennis, music, etc.
  86. Play croquet on the lawn. And try bocci too.
  87. Set up a badminton net. You could use it for volleyball too.
  88. Play HORSE. With little ones, set up a mini basketball net next to the real one.
  89. Create a scavenger hunt. Do it on your own property or around town.
  90. Erect a bird feeder. And then watch the show from your window.
  91. Join a Junior Ranger program. Both national parks dc.about.com/od/childrensactivities/a/JuniorRangers.htm
  92. See a dramatic performance together. Doesn’t matter if it’s a puppet show in the park or a touring Broadway show.
  93. Put on your own dramatic performance. Write a script, sew costumes or just do a little improv.
  94. Make music. Either make your own instruments or play traditional ones.
  95. Play charades.
  96. Break out the family movies. And the popcorn too!
  97. Go to a flea market or garage sale. See if the kids are better negotiators than you.
  98. Have a garage sale. Kids can earn spending money by selling their old stuff.
  99. Climb trees together. Of course, only if the kids are big enough, and you are brave enough.
  100. Get a book a riddles. See if you can stump each other, then write your own.
  101. Keep your kitchen cool. Make no-bake cookies busycooks.about.com/od/dessertrecipes/tp/nobakecookybars.htm
  102. Do not take special time away as punishment for behavior earlier in the day. Being able to count on special time with you provides them support and sense of unconditional love and connection.
  103. Have a reading hour. Everybody needs a little down time every day (especially mom!), so it’s a great idea to have a designated reading hour to enjoy a good book. (I like the idea of using the hottest hours in the afternoon to go inside and take a siesta, but every family is different.) You can find endless book lists online to help you come up with a summer reading list for both you and your kids. (Here’s one <http://www.scholastic.com/summer/>  to get you started. And another <http://www.teachersfirst.com/100books.cfm> .) You can even opt to reward your kids with a frozen treat every week for reading a certain number of books or pages. (Will they earn one scoop or two?) And don’t forget the value of a good kids magazine. We’ve been subscribing to NatGeoKids <http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/kids/>  for years and I can’t say enough good things about it.
  104. Do science experiments. I love doing at-home science experiments. Our favorite one so far has been the classic mentos and diet coke explosion <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKoB0MHVBvM> , but you can check out several websites or library books with other fantastic and easy ideas for learning in disguise. This <http://www.sciencebob.com/experiments/index.php>  is one of my favorite websites for this very thing.
  105. Frequent the library. You knew this one was coming. Most (if not all) public libraries in the United States take part in a summer reading program, offering prizes upon completion and hosting free weekly activities. Since you’re going to be having a reading hour every day anyway, you may as well put a weekly trip to the library on your calendar. And please don’t miss the nonfiction “how to” section of the library. That’s where you can find all sorts of books that will fuel your kids’ brain energy back at home. (How to make paper airplanes, how to do science experiments, how to plant a garden, etc.) I can’t think of a better way to spend a hot summer day than by taking a trip to the library followed by a frozen treat!
  106. Bake something, anything=
  107. Construct something with blocks or Lego’s
  108. Draw/Color together
  109. Go window shopping
  110. Host a play date with their favorite friend
  111. Dress Up together
  112. Go swimming (indoor or outdoor)
  113. Have a picnic (outside or on the living room floor!)
  114. Listen to new music together
  115. Visit a museum
  116. Visit a Zoo
  117. Visit a pet store
  118. Write and mail a letter to someone special
  119. Play a card or board game
  120. Take a walk
  121. Get out baby photos and talk about them
  122. Sing Songs
  123. Take a class together at local art center
  124. Go roller or ice skating together
  125. Tell stories about when your child was a baby
  126. Build a blanket fort
  127. Tell your child what makes them special ( to you and others)
  128. Teach/tell your child about your job – take them to work for a day if you can
  129. Have a scavenger hunt (indoor or outdoor)
  130. Go to a movie together
  131. Visit your child at school
  132. Dig out your year book and share about your experiences
  133. Visit a nursing home or hospital
  134. Finger Paint
  135. Take pictures
  136. Visit and learn about places in your neighborhood (fire station, police station, post office, dairy, etc.)
  137. Clean out a room together (basement, attic, garage)
  138. Work a puzzle together
  139. Plan a vacation together – then GO!
  140. Make S’mores
  141. Build a bird house
  142. Play a sport together
  143. Make homemade pizza
  144. Rake leaves and play/jump in them
  145. Go on a hayride
  146. Visit an apple orchard / pumpkin patch
  147. Plant something
  148. Have a water fight
  149. Play hide and seek
  150. Go to the state fair
  151. Collect different fall leaves
  152. Have a block party
  153. Take a hike
  154. Make puppets and put on a show for each other
  155. Tell stories about your childhood
  156. Attend athletic event
  157. Make homemade ice cream
  158. Learn about different cultures
  159. Take flowers to a friend
  160. Go wading in a creek
  161. Go for a train ride
  162. Go horseback riding
  163. Climb a tree
  164. Go camping
  165. Have a family talent show
  166. Draw a map and have a treasure hunt
  167. Walk/play in the rain
  168. Talk about feelings/emotions
  169. Paint a picture by numbers together
  170. Go to a theater performance
  171. Complete a DIY project together
  172. Wash the car
  173. Play Frisbee
  174. Pick up litter in the community
  175. Fly a homemade kite
  176. Jump rope
  177. Exercise together
  178. Discuss nutrition and the 4 basic food groups
  179. Start a savings account – talk about budgeting and saving money
  180. Write a story (draw illustrations together too!)
  181. Go fishing
  182. Visit a relative
  183. Visit the neighbors
  184. Go bowling
  185. Dance party!
  186. Play Simon Says
  187. Have letter or color of the week and look for them together
  188. Play “I Spy”
  189. Act out a favorite story together
  190. Listen to music and play homemade instruments together
  191. Start a gratitude journal with your child – they can draw what they are thankful for
  192. Let your child pick out the menu for a meal
  193. Start a collection
  194. Practice/teach something (reading, tying shoes, zipping zipper, sports, rhyming, sorting,
  195. telling time)
  196. Sidewalk chalk
  197. Go for a bike ride
  198. Play pretend
  199. Make a collage out of photos and/or clippings of their favorite things
  200. Tell jokes
  201. Spend time simply LISTENING to them.
  202. Make a list of things you want to do together in the future!
  203. Visit the school weight room. *Weight room policy-anyone under the age of 18 must have an adult (18 or older) with them while using the weight room. You may check out weight room keys at the main office. Keeping the Indian weight room clean and picked up shows our students that responsibilities go beyond our classroom walls. *If alumni, parents, grandparents, or friends plan to visit school, please stop by the Elementary or High School secretary’s office to get a required visitors pass. Thank you for your cooperation. In accordance with federal guidelines, parents/guardians may request information regarding the professional qualifications of the student's teacher(s). Please contact the superintendent's office for details.



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