Summer! The time of the year that kids live for, but also the time some parents secretly dread. Not enough activities often leads to the most dreaded two word sentence, “I’m bored.” Even with all the new gadgets and toys at home, can’t we agree that kids still somehow get bored and need new things to do. Keep everyone in the family sane during time off from school with these fun boredom busters and indoor activities.
1. Oobleck also known as the safer, stain-free slime
We all know how much kids love slime, but did you know that there’s something even better? That’s Oobleck. This will keep your kids busy no matter how old. It is part solid, part liquid, and totally and completely FUN. This sensory goop is so easy to make with ingredients you probably already have at home and there’s endless ways to play and learn with it. All you need is cornstarch and water, plus any color you want to add. It is taste safe and non toxic which makes it a great sensory activity for both babies and toddlers.
2 cups cornstarch
1 cup water
A large plastic bin
Instructions: Add the food coloring into the water to evenly color the oobleck. Then stir in the cornstarch. That’s it! Let the hours of fun begin.
2. Make your own Playdough
Playdough is a staple in almost every household with children because of its wide array of benefits for kids. But what’s better than playdough, you ask? Homemade playdough! They last for months in a sealed bag, inexpensive to make, and the best part is adding different colors and even using scents to customize your dough. Throw in a rolling pin and some cookie cutters and you’ve got hours of fun!
2 cups of flour
1 cup salt
1 tbsp oil
1 cup cold water
Any liquid food coloring
Instructions: Combine the flour and salt together. Next, add water, food coloring and oil. Mix all ingredients until you’ve reached your desired consistency. If it’s too wet, add a little more flour.
3. Sensory tables
With the warmer weather of summer, there’s no better way to bring out the sensory bins and water play tables. The beauty of sensory tables is that the possibilities are endless when it comes to the activities and it’s not just fun, but also educational in all aspects as it engages all of a child’s senses. A sensory table is basically a table full of materials that get children to use all senses, touch, taste, smell, see, and hear.
Some of our favorite sensory table activities include water beads, pompoms, kinetic sand, shaving cream, rice & quinoa, noodles, and so many more. Add scoopers, tongs, trucks, cars, and tweezers for more fun. The activities are limitless. You can include things that are hot, cold, smooth, wet, and sticky. We love all these ideas and offer them for kids who are craving sensory stimulation but also a great way to expose kids to new and unfamiliar sensations.
4. Chalk Art
Another staple to have during the summer are boxes of sidewalk chalks! Even adults love drawing with chalk. There’s just something nostalgic about chalk stained hands and knees and a big canvas. There are so many different ways to teach and reinforce concepts to kids from letters and numbers to colors, shapes and so much more. Grab your box of chalk, find a sidewalk, and spend hours of quality time coloring and drawing just about anything you can think of. Don’t forget to draw a hopscotch pattern for everyone in the neighborhood to enjoy!
5. Healthy Homemade Popsicles
Nothing screams summer like a nice colorful popsicle! Get the kids involved and make fruit and vegetable popsicles in your kitchen. They are healthy and you can feel great about serving them at any time of the day. Getting kids involved in the kitchen helps them create interest in different food, develop fine motor skills, expand their palate and promote healthier eating habits. Using training knives, give the kids a sense of independence by allowing them to cut fruits and vegetables to make the popsicle. We love using bananas, strawberries, mangoes, and drizzling them with natural sweeteners such as honey and maple syrup.