Choose a traditional sport such as
baseball, basketball or soccer or spend time making up games of your own
such as bowling with empty plastic bottles for bowling pins and a rubber
ball to knock them down. Make your own tossing game with a basket and
wads of paper. Have races. Take a walk or hike and look for interesting
things. Go swimming. Get active and celebrate the kind of sports that
support healthy fun. (Spectator sports can be used to celebrate too, but
we encourage the do-it-yourself types of family sports fun.)
Find a good watermelon and enjoy it together! Spit the seeds and have a
contest to see who can spit them the farthest. Use a melon ball scoop to
make melon balls for a fruit salad. Cut a watermelon in half and carve
designs through the rind to make a decorated watermelon bowl for your
salad. Dry some seeds to plant for next year.
Spend time with
a friend or two. Send a card to a friend you haven't seen in a while or
call one and spend time talking. Set up a time to meet a friend for
dinner or dessert and celebrate friendship day. Set up a play day with a
friend or friends.
Your Toes Day
toes. Wiggle them in sand or mud. Stand on your tip toes and dance.
Play "This little piggy went to market". Soak your feet in water and
wiggle them to make little splashes or spray them with cool water from
a misting bottle. Pamper your toes with a pedicure or paint your
toenails, just for fun. Wear flip-flops or go barefoot and let your
Serpent Day & Lighthouse Day
about sea serpents. Draw pictures of what you think such a creature
might look like. Play in the pool or bathtub and pretend that you are
playing with a friendly sea serpent. Make a sea serpent using clay or
sew a toy one using scrap fabric and a little cotton batting for
stuffing. Make a sea serpent puppet using a paper plate and
construction paper, and make up a story about it. Perform your sea
serpent puppet play to celebrate this day.
Make your own
piggy bank to encourage you to save some dollars. Make it using
a plastic bottle or a box and be creative. Make a chore chart that
includes ways for a child to do extra things for which he/she can be
paid. Older kids can make a budget and plan to sped wisely and save
also. It's a good day to open a savings account for a child who
doesn't already have one. Play a board game that involves using play
money. Practice making change. Count real money and use it as a
learning experience. Fold a dollar to make origami art.
National S'mores Day
marshmallows and start toasting! If you can have a campfire, it's great
fun. You can also toast them over charcoal, an outdoor grill, a stove
indoors or even melt them in a microwave (You have to spread the melted
marshmallows on the graham cracker). To finish the s'more, sandwich a
toasted marshmallow between two pieces of graham cracker with a piece of
a chocolate bar placed next to the marshmallow. Yum! (Be careful with
children and anything hot, especially be careful with marshmallows
because they are sticky and a hot one can stick to skin and burn badly.)
Play in the
Play in a sandbox or in sand on the beach. Make castles and other sand
sculptures. Make roads and drive toy cars on the roads. Pour water onto
sand and make rivers. Play with silly sand toys. Color salt and make a
"sand" painting by gluing colored salt on poster board or any surface.
Watch a minute egg timer with sand running through it.
The Perseid meteor shower is visible for almost a week in August
(depending on the cloud cover in your area). The 12th is usually the
best night for viewing. The shower occurs in the northeast area of the
sky and are best viewed between 4:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m., although we
have seen as many as 16 of them by watching in the evening, after dark.
Find a place were it is reasonably dark and there isn't too much light
pollution and you can see the stars. Get comfortable so that you can
look up for a long period of time. Oooohhh and Ahhhhhhh together when
you see a "shooting star" and keep track of how many you see.
If you can, find a way to ride a roller coaster! Little kids can take
empty boxes and create an imaginary roller coaster. You can also look at
pictures of coasters and imagine! Some kids are fascinated by the "how
they work" details and might want to read or even study about roller
coasters. (My son's high school physics class took a trip to
California for two days just to ride coasters and pay attention to the
physics involved.) You can also use a building set to create a
min-roller coaster of your own. (Erector™
sets, K-nex™, Legos™,
Tinkertoys™ and other building sets all are
capable of making coasters.) Kids can also use craft sticks and
other materials to make roller coaster models.
Bury stuff in mud. Let it dry and then
dig it up! It's more fun if a parent buries things so that each find
is a real discovery for the child. You can wash and dry chicken
bones or break up small clay pots and bury those. There are a
few places in the country where they offer real archaeological
experiences for children, which can be really exciting. You can make
your own "fossils" by pouring plaster of Paris into lightly greased
containers and letting it dry. When the shapes are dry, scratch
shapes, letters or drawings into the dried plaster. You can also
cover the shape with a dark color of paint and scratch the letters
or art out of the dark part to expose the white plaster which in
underneath. Of course, you can bury these treasures and dig them up
Put the FUN in Parenting!
Ultimate Collection of Ideas for Keeping Kids Busy
Ideas for Tots through Teens
By Kas Winters
We no longer ship outside the US.
Bad Poetry Day
Use this as a way to
get kids writing. It's "bad" poetry day--so they aren't being graded
on how well they do or how perfect it is! That can be fun and
creative. It's also a good time to play rhyming games and to make up
silly poems that rhyme.
Visit an airport and
watch the planes or just drive and park close to one and watch
planes arrive and take off. If there's an air show around
those are always fun, but that would probably be on a different day.
Make model airplanes. Fly paper airplanes. Read about planes or look
up information about them on the Internet. Watch a movie about
flying, space or rockets. Let your mind take flight.
Be an Angel Day
What a perfect day to
teach children to reach out and help others. Find a friend in need
and do something together. It might be just making a phone call to
say hello, stopping by with some food or flowers, scheduling a "work
day" to help someone with yard work, offering to babysit for a child
or children so a mom can have a break, going grocery shopping for
someone who has limited mobility, or just inviting someone to have
dinner with you and your family. Get the kids involved in whatever
it is. You can also schedule yourselves to help feed the hungry at a
shelter in town, to work at a local foodbank or other type of
outreach. Kids who learn to reach out to others will usually
continue to provide service throughout their lifetimes.
Women's Equality Day
Use this as an
opportune time to have a discussion with a daughter about important
things like setting goals, setting boundaries, being her own person
and standing up for herself. Discuss instances in your own life
where you have done these things and how it made a positive
difference to you.
ANY DAY YOU CHOOSE!
Sometimes you just need
to relax and do nothing and let your imagination kick into gear.
This is a great day for that! Get comfy. Day dreaming is permitted.
Think of possibilities. Play the "what if" game. What would happen
if.......? Just do it for fun and then watch how it can jumpstart
your thinking as it applies to everyday life. Oooohhhhh! What fun
you can have!