Ah yes, the sounds of summer; crickets chirping, planes buzzing over our heads, and the familiar complaints of there being “nothing to do”. As sure as the day is long, they shall come. Do you know what you’ll say when they do?
While we are big proponents of getting out and exploring, we also advocate for some of those lazy summer days. The world is different from what it was when we grew up. Now, there is almost always something vying for our attention. That’s why we believe it’s important to learn to be still at an early age. By this, we don’t mean sitting in a chair for hours on end (unless you’re cloud watching), but appreciating the slower moments and not rushing off to fill them.
Here are our ideas of things you can suggest when the kids are "bored":
1. Cut ‘em loose outside!
Do you have a backyard? If so, there’s surely hours of entertainment to be found here. Hide and seek, scavenger hunts, and eye-spy are just a few. They’ll get some exercise and fresh air in their lungs and can help to ease some of the bored summer jitters. Studies also suggest that more time spent outside can improve children’s focus and concentration levels. All good things!
2. Baking contest.
We’re not trying to create more mess for you to clean up, honestly. But cooking and baking at an early age can be a great way to encourage confidence, imagination, and creativity! Children love to feel like they are helping or contributing to the family. Plus, who knows, you might get a great meal out of it? Be sure to send compliments to the chef even if you find an eggshell in your entree!
3. Fort building
This one is a given. Every child should experience the joy of constructing their own fort of sheets, cushions, and whatever else they can find. This activity can be done inside or outside and could even lead to an overnight camp out in the backyard or living room.
4. Get artsy
Drawing and coloring has been proven to improve fine motor skills and reduce stress, which is good for the body and mind. Additionally, it gives them free reign to be as imaginative and creative as they’d like - especially when all they’re given is a blank piece of paper and a writing utensil. It’s time to dust off the old crayons and markers this summer!
5. Read a book.
While there are many benefits of reading at any age, reading in your youth can help to develop stronger focus and a more advanced vocabulary. Additionally, reading books and relating to the characters encourages empathy and helps to build stronger social skills. To top it all off, reading can a heck of a good time and children don’t always realize how much they’ll enjoy it until they persuaded. When was the last time you visited your local library? Make a trip and let them select a few to bring home and read over the next few weeks.
Notice a pattern here? No screens were used in the making of these fun activities. Don’t get us wrong, we support a healthy dose of technology (our future likely depends on it) but we love being active and engaged and we want you and the generation that follows to continue being creative and imaginative whether it’s inside or in the great outdoors!