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Elementary School Kids Elementary School Kids

Kid-friendly activities that don’t cost a dime

Posted by on May. 29, 2012 at 10:54 PM
  • 14 Replies
2 moms liked this

Neighborhood football game
Gather the neighborhood kids for a friendly game of football, kickball or other team activity in the street. Parents can take turns as referee, water boy and cheerleaders! Go team!


Scavenger hunt
Put together a list of random items that most households would have and set your children loose in the neighborhood (or send them with an adult chaperone, depending on their ages, of course). Think of things that your neighbors won’t mind parting with, such as a birthday candle, holiday cocktail napkin or No. 2 pencil (no points for automatic!).

Library
The libraries in most cities are untapped resources -- they offer so much more than just book rentals. Many libraries have great children’s programs that include storytimes free of charge.

Park
Pack a picnic and head to your local park for some good old fashioned fresh air, swings, slides and teeter-totters. Don’t forget to bring a ball, some sand toys and an extra towel or change of clothes so you don’t tote too much sand home with you!

Pond/feeding ducks
Whether you live in a city or a more rural area, local ponds are frequented by ducks looking for a free handout. Save up a bag of stale bread and make the ducks’ day. Kids love feeding the ducks, but they love chasing them around the pond even more. Some citified ducks are pretty brazen, so make sure your children keep their distance as they toss the bread.

Fishing
If you don’t have a fishing pole, don’t sweat it. You can make your own by tying a piece of string to a stick. At the end of the string, tie on a hook and use hot dogs for bait! C’mon, every busy supermom has hot dogs in her fridge, right? But before you toss your line in a pond, make sure you know the rules. And have your fishing license if your state requires one.

Bike ride
Dust off the tires of your children’s bikes and encourage the kids to spin their wheels! Hop on a bike yourself and get some exercise while enjoying time with the kids.

Go fly a kite
A windy day practically screams “kite weather!” So grab the kids and set your kite afloat on the wind. If you don’t have a kite, you can make one with a few simple supplies that you probably have lying around the house. Google “how to make a diamond kite” for some simple directions! Could be a nice craft on a rainy day. And give the kids something to look forward to doing once the rain clears.

Nature walk
Even if you don’t know any good hiking trails in your area, take a walk around your neighborhood and discover the wildlife (Look, it’s the Smith’s dog, Sampson!). Keep your eyes out for unique birds or little animals like bunnies and squirrels, and make a list of the ones you see.

Free day at the museum
There are some incredible children’s museums in cities all across the country, and many offer great events and “free days.” For example, Target sponsors Free First Friday Nights at the Children’s Museum of Phoenix. On the first Friday of every month, the museum is open to the public completely free of charge from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.


What else can you share that only cost a bit of time for the kids to do this summer??

by on May. 29, 2012 at 10:54 PM
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Replies (1-10):
mom22tumblebugs
by Gold Member on May. 29, 2012 at 10:56 PM

All are great ideas. Except I can't stand when kids go around doing scavenger hunts in the neighborhood.

culinaryqueen
by Member on May. 29, 2012 at 11:05 PM

 Frog hunting, rollerskating

MomVsBoys
by Bronze Member on May. 29, 2012 at 11:11 PM

 We did a family walk-scavenger hunt last year. I made a list of things to look for, acorn, dandelion, flat rock, squirrel, pine tree, grey cat, brown dog, red car, blue van, house with a porch, house with shutters, man riding a bike,  and so on, about 20-25 things. Nothing to bring home, they just had to show everyone and check it off the list. 

jclovinlife
by on May. 30, 2012 at 1:29 AM
What a great idea! I'm totally going to do this! I don't really care to go door to door, mainly because I really dislike solicitors.

Quoting MomVsBoys:

 We did a family walk-scavenger hunt last year. I made a list of things to look for, acorn, dandelion, flat rock, squirrel, pine tree, grey cat, brown dog, red car, blue van, house with a porch, house with shutters, man riding a bike,  and so on, about 20-25 things. Nothing to bring home, they just had to show everyone and check it off the list. 

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Fields456
by Bronze Member on May. 30, 2012 at 1:31 AM
You can take them on a late night snipe hunt
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acrogodess
by Bronze Member on May. 30, 2012 at 1:35 AM
Catch fireflies, set up the Tv and dvd player in the back yard to simulate a drive in theater, write and act out your own play, dancing contests, talent show with their friends
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mrgetinold
by on May. 30, 2012 at 10:19 AM
Outdoor olympics ste up balls for throwing into cans, beanbags as a shot put, a long jump with a tape measure a slip and slide and make medal out of yarn and consturtion paper or whatever u have, this will tire a kid out and help to not hear a i am bored
2Busy4Choas
by on May. 30, 2012 at 10:24 AM

 Kitchen time: Get Plastic bowls, utensils, ect and put rice in it- let them play

Rock collection: Find different rocks, let them wash them

If you have shaving cream on hand- Put it either in the tub or on a table- they love to play in it

We do alot of crafts projects that are inexpensive... yes things oyu have to buy but very inexpensive items

One thing that we like to do is coloring projects- then take to a Nursing home or somewhere for the elderly to enjoy

 

Barabell
by Barbara on May. 30, 2012 at 2:12 PM

activity/classes at local rec center

Barabell
by Barbara on May. 30, 2012 at 2:12 PM

going for a walk at the local nature center

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