Worried that a whole summer out of school – and doing little more than sitting in front of the television – is turning their young brains to mush? Or that video games may take over their lives for the next 90 days? Time to come up with some crafty summer activities to help stimulate their creative genius. Not only will it help keep their minds active, but creative activities will keep everyone from falling victim to the most dreaded of summertime troubles: boredom.
Life Size Portraits
You can do this in a couple different ways:
- Get large pieces or rolls of paper that you can lay out on a flat surface. Have your child lie down on the paper with his arms just a little apart from his body so you can outline his whole body with a marker. After you’ve outlined him let him fill in the details of hair, clothes and facial features with crayons or colored markers.
After he’s all done working on the project, help him to write his name on it and hang it on his bedroom wall. Your child will love to have his own artwork where he can admire it and show it off to his friends.
- Get a tub of sidewalk chalk. Sweep off a space on a patio or driveway where it’s safe for your child to play. Have him lie down on the cement in such a way that you get a chalk outline of his entire body. Then let him work on adding details. You can assist with picking out colors to help him learn those as well. Or make this fun and different by allowing him to make himself into a funny monster or other creature.
Pasta Bead Necklaces
You could make this a little less messy by preparing the pasta bead ahead of time. Then you could just allow the kids to have fun making the necklaces, rather than messes.
Items you’ll need per color:
- 3 tbsps. white vinegar
- 3 drops of food coloring
- 1 cup Ditalini pasta (macaroni salad type)
- Sandwich size plastic bags
- Tin foil sheets
Place the white vinegar and food coloring in a sandwich-size bag to combine. Then add pasta, gently mixing and shaking the bag to coat well. Dump out the liquid and place on a sheet of tin foil to dry overnight.
You will want to make at least 3 colors of pasta beads but you can make as many as you want. The more colors you create, the more combinations the kids will be able to make.
Once you’re ready to have the kids start making the necklaces, cut a piece of string long enough to easily fit over their heads once it’s tied. Thread the string through a cotton ball on one end to keep the beads from sliding off as the children string the necklace. You can then let them get to work.
This might be an all-time favorite for the kids because when they’re done they can eat it. You need any type of candy with holes that your children like to eat and elastic string. Lifesavers, Twizzlers (cut into smaller pieces), and candy beads are all good choices. Follow the same instructions as above for stringing your bracelet. The kids will love it!
What kind of summer activities do you have for your kiddos? I’d love to hear about them. I’m always looking for new suggestions for summer fun!