Parents love spending time with their kids over the summer. Sometimes it can be difficult to occupy young ones over the summer break, though. Plus, it’s important to keep kids learning over the summer and fresh for a new school year. From cooking meals to making crosswords, there are plenty of educational summer activities for kids. Here are five favorites.
#1 Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Sustainability activities are a great way to teach kids how to keep our planet safe. Great sustainability activities for kids include gardening, recycling, and composting. Families can also volunteer for park clean-ups or tree-plantings in their community. It’s a great way to make new friends and to teach kids about getting involved. For more educational sustainability activities, view these 15 ideas from Teach Starter.
#2 Tour Your City
Whether you live near a big city or in a small town, there’s somewhere you can tour to learn more about your community. Visit museums, historical sites, zoos, libraries, or even local businesses.
For a more specialized day trip, pick a theme and center your visits around that. For example, maybe your child loves candy. You can visit a library to learn more about candy. Then, go to a candy store to see how they make candy. Also look to see if there are any museums that have exhibits about candy. You’ll learn a lot along the way!
To plan these kinds of tours, you can act like a tourist and hire a tour guide. You can also do some online research to plan your own tour or pair your tours with an activity like Geocaching. Earth caches and virtual caches, in particular, will lead you to educational hot-spots.
#3 Cook Meals Together
Cooking meals offer a lot of educational benefits to your kids. There’s plenty of math and science involved in cooking. Especially with baking, kids must be precise with their measurements and their ingredients. To teach kids why, try a few batches of something simple, like cookies. Make a few where the measurements or ingredients are wrong. It’ll teach them the importance of following directions and measuring very quickly!
Cooking with kids also provides a great opportunity to teach them about nutrition. Talk with your kids about how to read nutrition labels. Teach them what they mean and what affects certain ingredients have on our bodies. For more tips on teaching nutrition to kids, visit this guide from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
#4 Create Airplanes and Rockets
For another STEM-related activity, teach kids to make their own airplanes and rockets! From balloon rockets to paper airplanes, there’s plenty of ways for kids to learn about flight. Plus, they get to be creative! Learn more about the science of paper airplanes here.
#5 Make Word Puzzles
Word puzzles offer the most versatile educational summer activities for kids all around. By making your own crosswords and word searches, your kids can learn about anything. Word puzzles will pair well with any other educational summer activities for kids, too. Plus, they’re so easy to make, you can make an educational word puzzle for your kids every single day! It’ll develop their reading skills, test their knowledge of certain subjects, and encourage them to learn more about new subjects. The best part? Kids can enjoy word puzzles anytime, any day, rain or shine.
Whether you’re looking to keep kids occupied for an afternoon or for a whole week, these five educational summer activities for kids will cover you. Before you know it, the summer will be over and they’ll be back to school. Enjoy the time you have with them by starting these activities now.
Kristen Seikaly used her artistic background, research skills, and love for the internet to launch her first blog, Operaversity. Now she uses the skills to connect teachers, parents, and game enthusiasts with Crossword Hobbyist and My Word Search. She studied music at the University of Michigan, and now lives in Philadelphia.