Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Summer Fun Ideas!

We have officially been out of school for 4.5 days and have already spent >12 hours at the pool. While it has been a nice celebration of Summer and relief from the heat, I know we can't keep this up for the next 10 weeks, lest we turn into brown prunes.

Thanks to the birthday presents we received on the last day of school, I have yet to hear "I am bored..." but I know it is only a matter of time. I do believe that allowing a child to become bored is necessary for them to be creative. My children's best ideas happen when I am in the next room, uninvolved in their play. That being said...I like to have a bit of structure in the Summer and ideas in my back pocket to keep us from going stir crazy.

So, here are my ideas...and I would LOVE to hear yours:

Summer Notebooks
I took them to select 3 subject notebooks Friday. The three tabs are:
1) Bible verses- I want us to memorize one a week. I am choosing them based on questions the kids are asking. Just this weekend they asked me if God was most important in the world and cleaning was next? (Ouch! Is this their view of my values????) So, we are doing Mark 12:29-31 this week and next.
2) Books- We have to read 11 books for school's Summer reading assignment, but my children really do enjoy reading a lot. We participate in our local Library's Summer Reading program, which provides a tally chart, but I am hoping that having them record the titles will keep their handwriting up to par over the next three months (under the guise of a little competition).
3) New words- We have informally been working on our vocabulary, so I thought having a tab where we write new words that we learn would be another interesting/sneaky way to practice handwriting. (This week's words so far have been purchase and amputate.)

Day Camps
I am a big believer in morning (9a-12p) day camps during the Summer. I think it gives the children exposure to all different types of activities without the commitment of a whole season. It also gives us a reason to get out of the house and get going every day.

We try to stick to our 1 hour of screen time limitation even in the Summer, so we have 13 hours to fill every day! (And a Daddy who is at work 11-12 of those.) Spending 3 hours learning something new, under the instruction of a knowledgeable person is constructive and fun...and it gives me time to get many of my responsibilities handled!

Adventure Cards
We are an adventure loving crew! So, I am working on index cards with daily adventures on the back and a clue or two on the front. These range from crafty ideas at home to a bike ride and picnic. I let the trio help me come up with ideas, so they contributed gems like 'breakfast, lunch and dinner in bed.' There are also a couple of special day trips in the mix.

I am not crafty, so these are not fancy, just handwritten on index cards...The clues include indoor/outdoor and how much time required--so we can make choices based on weather and how much time we have on a particular day.

We use a 'leader of the day' rotation to keep arguing to a minimum, so the plan would be to let the leader choose the day's card. I have tried variations of this before and it really helps with boredom busting!

So, now it is your turn...What are your ideas for constructive, inexpensive, boredom busting Summer fun? Please share!


Pam said...

Our local movie theatre has shows cheap at 10am, 2 days per week.
Painting, let them paint the brick with water only.
Roller skating
wash windows
Kick ball
make kick the can ice cream
Family Fun has tons of craft ideas

Traci said...

I saw this on Ramona and Beezuz (the movie) WHICH IS GREAT. Anyway- they had a roll of butcher paper and they worked for a loooong time on a mural that surrounded the classroom by the time they finished. Have them begin drawing scenes from summer and keep unrolling as the summer goes on and have them add more scenes. I may try it with my kids who are 10, 11, and 14.

Miss Molly said...

Hey there! I've been reading your blog for a couple months now and I wanted to let you know that it has been such a great blessing to my life. I simply love the way God speaks through you. I'm 23 years old and have many questions and concerns about my future and what God has planned for my life. Reading your blog has been a comfort to me in so many ways. Thank you for your honesty and for the time you take to share your story. It has reminded me that even If I don’t realize it or feel it, God is acting in my life as I speak (type). I just can't see it from the place I'm in at this moment. Reading the story of you and your husband has been particularly helpful to a single gal like me. I wish I had read that a long time ago. More young women need to here that story! Thank you again for allowing God to work through you. I hope you and your family have a great summer.