It’s summer! The time of year where fun and freedom reigns! It also seems to be the time of year when parents hear “I’m bored” and “What are we doing next?” a couple dozen times a day. I don’t know about you, but I don’t have the money to pay admission to the local pool, a variety of museums, the zoo, every ice cream shop within a 20-mile radius, or play putt-putt every single day of summer. With this in mind, I have 10 easy, fun, and inexpensive ideas to beat summer boredom.
1. Join the summer reading program at your local library. There are usually prizes for finishing and fun events to take part in. If your local library doesn’t have a reading program, you can join in Scholastic’s Summer Reading Challenge or Barnes and Noble’s Summer Reading.
2. Grab a bag of water balloons and stage an impromptu water balloon fight. Most dollar stores carry water balloons, and a single bag will cover quite a fight.
3. Set up a simple playground obstacle course. Big kids will have fun racing to get the best times or even setting up obstacle course challenges for each other.
4. Hike. All you need to hike is a comfortable pair of shoes, sunscreen, water, and a path or trail. A quick internet search will most likely produce a number of trails, paths, or open space areas in your area.
5. Hit the splash park. As a mom, I love splash parks because the kids can play in the water and have a blast without requiring full-on swimming.
6. Flag down the ice cream truck next time it drives through your neighborhood. A few bucks will create a great summer memory.
7. Turn a walk in your neighborhood into an adventure. Using a pen and paper, plan a nature scavenger hunt for your kids.
8. Make s’mores. You can use solar ovens, grills, candles, fireplaces, or whatever safe option works best for you.
9. See a drive-in movie. Drive-in movies cost a fraction of what seeing a film in a regular theater costs, and usually you get to see a double feature. Add the fun pre-movie atmosphere of hanging out, playing around under the huge screen, and eating snacks out of the back of the car, and you have summertime magic on your hands.
10. Make homemade ice cream. You can use an ice cream maker if you have one or use coffee can or plastic bag methods. It will keep the kids busy for a while, and then reward their hard work with a treat.
What are your favorite summer boredom-busting activities?