Summertime is a great opportunity to get your kids outdoors and active. But for parents, it can be tough to find ways to keep them busy and entertained.
Luckily, there are plenty of outdoor activities for you and your child to choose from. Whether it’s taking a trip to the park or signing up for summer camp, there is something for every personality type.
Read on for our favorite ways to get your kids out for some fun in the sun.
10 Fun Ways to Keep Your Kids Active Outdoors This Summer
1. Go to Outdoor Movies or Concerts
If you want to spend quality time with your young ones outdoors and feel like mixing it up from the usual visit to the playground, look for family-friendly outdoor movie screenings or concerts in your area.
These are typically offered in town squares or parks during the summer months and make for a great evening activity that doesn’t cost much.
Do a quick search online or ask around at your local library to find out when and where these will be taking place near you. Try to find a movie that the whole family will enjoy, or look for a concert with kid-friendly performers.
2. Take a Splash in the Pool or Sprinklers
If you’re looking to beat the heat, there’s no better way to do it than by cooling off in the pool or sprinklers. Many local pools have special times set aside just for families with young children, so take advantage of that and let your kids splash around to their heart’s content.
If you don’t have access to a pool, sprinklers are always a fun option and can be easily set up in your backyard. If you really want to go all out, you could even turn it into a game of Slip ‘N Slide. Just be sure to supervise your children at all times when they’re near water.
3. Sign Your Kid Up For a Class or Camp
It’s important that children’s minds stay active while they’re out of school for the summer, and one great way to do that is by signing them up for a class or camp.
There are all sorts of summer programs available, from sports to art to theater. There’s sure to be something that interests your child and helps them explore their passions. Not only will they be having fun, but they’ll also be learning something new.
Classes and camps can get pricey, but many offer discounts if you sign up early or register for multiple sessions. And some even offer scholarships for families who can’t afford to pay the full price.
4. Go on Nature Scavenger Hunts
Getting into nature is a great way to spend a summer day, and it’s even more fun when you’re on the lookout for specific things.
Before heading out, make a list of items for your kids to find, such as rocks, leaves, flowers, or sticks. You can even make it a competition to see who can find the most items on the list.
Not only will your kids get some exercise by running around, but they’ll also be able to appreciate the beauty of nature. Visit nearby parks, forests, or nature trails to find the perfect spot for your scavenger hunt.
5. Try Backyard Camping
Your child can have the magical experience of camping without ever leaving the safety of your backyard.
Set up a tent, gather some activities or craft supplies, and let your child have an adventure right at home. This is a quick and easy solution to providing your kids with a private space similar to a fort or treehouse.
The great thing about tents is that they’re super easy to set up and take down, so you can do it as often as you like. And if the weather isn’t cooperating, you can always move the fun indoors.
6. Get Some Outdoor Equipment
Having plenty of toys set up in the yard makes it easy for kids to go outside and play.
A simple sandbox or water table can provide hours of fun, or you could get more elaborate with a swing set or playset. You can even find inflatable pools that are perfect for small yards.
If you don’t want to spend a lot of money, there are plenty of low-cost options such as chalk, hula hoops, or jump ropes. And if you get creative, you might be able to repurpose some of your child’s old toys for outdoor use as well.
7. Bring Your Child Along For Dog Walks
Dogs are the perfect walking companions, and bringing your child along will make it even more enjoyable.
Not only will they get to spend time with a furry friend, but they’ll also learn how to take care of a pet. And if you don’t have a dog, maybe one of your neighbors would be willing to let your child walk theirs for a bit.
Make sure to start off slow and choose a route that’s not too strenuous. Once you get the hang of it, you can even add in some stops along the way, such as a treat at the park or a visit to the dog beach.
This will prepare your young ones for when they’re finally ready to take on the responsibility of the family pet in a few short years.
8. Start an Entrepreneurial Venture
It’s never too early to start teaching your children about the value of hard work and determination.
One great way to do that is by helping them start their own business. This could be something as simple as setting up a lemonade stand or selling homemade crafts.
Another idea is to create a chore list for outdoor tasks such as raking leaves or washing the car. Your child can earn a commission for every job they complete, which will teach them about money management and budgeting.
Older children can make money by offering to do chores for neighbors or starting a dog-walking service. The sky’s the limit when it comes to entrepreneurial ventures, so get creative and have fun with it.
Not only will your child learn some valuable life lessons, but they’ll also get to enjoy the satisfaction of earning their own money.
9. Set Up a Messy Art Project Outside
Artistic projects are one of the most exciting activities for children to do during summer break. However, it can be a real headache for parents if the mess ends up inside the house.
The solution is to take the project outside, where you can hose down any spills and let the sun do the rest.
One fun idea is to make action paintings by having your child dip their hands in paint and then make prints on a large piece of paper or canvas. You can set up tarps, water buckets, and towels to make cleanup a breeze while letting your kids go wild.
10. Throw a Party
Want to be the coolest parent on the block? Throw a summer party for all the kids in the neighborhood.
This is a great opportunity to get to know your neighbors while giving your child a chance to socialize. You can set up some fun outdoor games, such as water balloon tosses or a treasure hunt. And don’t forget the food!
Nothing says summer like grilling hot dogs and serving up some refreshing watermelon. Just be sure to have plenty of sunscreen on hand to keep everyone safe from the sun.
Throwing a party for your child and their friends is a convenient idea for getting your kid outside — especially if your child’s birthday is in the summer But let them have a summer party, even if it’s not their special day — and you can be sure that will put a smile on their face.
With a little creativity and planning, you can easily find ways to get your kids outdoors this summer. With so many options available, there’s no excuse not to get your kids moving.
So go ahead and get started planning the remaining summer days with great activities. If you use an online calendar to keep activities organized, you can quickly share it with other family members and neighbors — or babysitters to make sure your kids are involved in joyful experiences that will augment summer learning.
Your kids will thank you for the summers they had as a kid. That, of course, won’t happen until later — but think back to your own childhood and incorporate some of those ideas this summer, too.
And who knows, you might relive some happy memories while building some “good ole days” for your children. And don’t forget to pack the sunscreen.
Image Credit: by Jill Wellington; Pexels; Thank you!
Student at UC Berkeley, currently working on a degree in Electrical Engineering/Computer Sciences and Business Administration. Experienced in CSX, productivity management, and chatbot implementation.