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Keepin em' busy for the summer......Ideas WELCOME

Hello to all you courageous mommies out there. I have a question that perhaps we can all benefit from. I have a house full of kids this summer and am looking for not only FUN but for EDUCATIONAL ways to keep them busy this summer. Keep in mind that my boys have usually had free reign of everything and it has been just recently that I have set up boundaries. This makes it a little more difficult because they like to do as they please, and if they think that something is about "work" or "learning" they are instantly turned off. So I need some creative ideas/ways to keep them occupied. The ages are 11, 8, 7, 5, and 3. Remember, I don't want it to "look" like learning, or feel like "work". Maybe something with a "reward" system, I don't know. At this point I am MORE THAN OPEN to ANY and ALL advice that you are willing to offer.
Thanks in advance for sharing and caring :) Have a great day!!
KIDDOSX8

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kiddosX8

Asked by kiddosX8 at 2:46 PM on Jun. 27, 2010 in General Parenting

Level 7 (182 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • i can send my kids to your house
    your kids will be busy playing

    what is your address?
    fiatpax

    Answer by fiatpax at 2:51 PM on Jun. 27, 2010

  • As for keeping the kiddos busy during the summer, you might want to try the local library. Our library has kids story time and movie afternoons.

    As far as boundaries, we set a "star system" for our 4 yo. He earns stars for good choices. We post them on a board so that he is always apprised of his star count. Once he has earned the stars, he can redeem them for toys. Here is the trick: Different toys "cost" a different number of stars. So, he has the choice of saving his stars for a bigger toy or spending them on a smaller toy. This has been really effective for him. Instead of asking for toys, he will ask how many stars he needs to earn before he can buy the toy. .

    We love it. We think it teaches good choices, saving and math. Hope you find a good system for your kids!
    ARgal

    Answer by ARgal at 3:02 PM on Jun. 27, 2010

  • You might want to consider joining one of the homeschooling groups. they can offer all kinds of educational activities that don't look like learning.
    And really, there is little in this world that is not educational.
    have you checked online? You might want to dived the kids into groups for at least some of the activities. older kids do one activity younger kids do another.
    outstandingLove

    Answer by outstandingLove at 3:03 PM on Jun. 27, 2010

  • :) OR I could send my kids to your house.......It really isn't that my kids don't stay "busy". It's more that the things they stay busy with are usually the less than desirable activities such as 1. Making "mudhole" pools in the yard for their "army dudes"
    2. Getting into daddy's fishing poles and "pretending" to fish in the yard....which might be okay if our yard wasn't FULL of trees for the fishing line and lures to get caught up in!!
    3. Getting into the "LOCKED" tool box and proceeding to "FIX" their bicycles, and whatever else they deem needs fixing! 4. SNAKE & FROG hunts - Which in itself isn't all that terrible EXCEPT that they bring them HOME!! yucky
    kiddosX8

    Comment by kiddosX8 (original poster) at 3:03 PM on Jun. 27, 2010

  • we are making a volcano today : )
    we have those science in a box kits that we save for rainy days.
    how about a rocket? model cars?
    bike rides at parks...maybe you could find some trees and plants or birds and bugs to identify or even collect. a little nail polish remover on a cotton ball kept inside a jar could kill a live bug, if the older kids want to preserve them.
    you could catch fire flies, then teach the oldest about how its bottom actually lights up. get a book from the library.
    while you are at the library, you could check out some books on pirates for bedtime reading, you could cover basic map skills by having a treasure hunt.
    maybe you could make a generator?
    you could always play sports too.
    skateboard, build a ramp
    create a business plan and have a lemonade stand.
    be sure to let us know how it goes, my boys are 6, 5 and 2...so in a few years i will need the same help : )
    happy2bmom25

    Answer by happy2bmom25 at 3:09 PM on Jun. 27, 2010

  • That is a houseful! to make learning look like fun well that is a tough one. Are you apposed to water balloons?
    have the little kids bring certain colors..like tell them get all the orange balloons first, tell the older ones to fill 10 each then go onto another color use different number amounts. trick the kids, when they have 10 in one pile tell then you want them to take 3 of them and throw them at "so and so" then ask another kid how many are left and go ahead and throw them. When they are all done throwing have each kid pick up 5 in one hand then 3 in another and then have them add how many that is.
    get out huge pieces of paper and tape them to the side of the house and get washable finger paint. mix colors for new colors and just use their fingers to make letters and numbers. Have silent "reading" time for 30 minutes while you make lunch, thats a stretch but worth a shot. good luck!
    wheresthewayout

    Answer by wheresthewayout at 3:10 PM on Jun. 27, 2010

  • They could do a lemonaide stand? That would teach them how to prepare the juice, marketing(making signs, put up around neighbourhood) Money(pricing the supplies/cost of making vs how much to charge per cup) It would also teach customer service, organization, patience.
    Make their own kite
    Baking(again, math, measuring)
    They could plant some flowers/veggies, if you have a garden or just get them some small pots and some seeds or already sprouted plants/veggies and that way they learn to care for a plant and see it grow and harvest! Would be a great idea for a pumpkin they could later use for halloween!

    Is there an old wooden piece of wooden furniture you/a friend/relative has that they could re sand and paint? That might need some space away from the house, but that would be fun. There are even kits you can buy where they put together there own bird house, and paint it after.

    I'll keep thinking!!! More ideas to come! :)
    minimo77

    Answer by minimo77 at 3:16 PM on Jun. 27, 2010

  • Do you have a parks and rec program?? How about some kind of camp?? Educational can also be learning how to take care of animals (volunteer at local humane shelter or vet clinic). My kids are in a cooking class through our parks and rec program and of course swimming lessons, t-ball, soccer and our library has a reading program and kids can win things like free pizza or ice cream at local businesses.
    If you are religious there are also many vacation bible schools going on as well.
    lil_angel00

    Answer by lil_angel00 at 4:10 PM on Jun. 27, 2010

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