10 Practical and Affordable Things To Do This Summer

Ever the Azkals fan, Naomi wrote about soccer camp or football for kids this summer. Her blogpost inspired me to make my own version of things for the kids to do during this 2 month long vacation. Here are a few more suggestions for fun and educational activities that you could do with your kids.

Coming from a practical and thrifty stay-at-home hands-on parent, it kind of requires more time & planning than usual. But then again you won’t be spending a fortune on fees and lessons.

  1. Home-cooking lessons. This is one of the life skills that you should teach your kids. You can start them on the road to self sufficiency at any age. Even a 5-year old will enjoy cutting veggies and mixing ingredients. It is a daily activity that will bring you together, show your kids the value of chores, and give them a sense of worth. You do not have to enroll them in any gourmet cooking lessons unless you have taught them everything you know about cooking and they show an interest to learn more.
  2. Take walks. It is recommended for even the busiest parent to find a few minutes of their time to take walks with their children. After a hard day at work, this is the time for you to stretch your legs and get some fresh air while sharing stories with your kids. If the kids are in the “why?” stage, a walk could also set the stage for a fun impromptu biology and botany science lesson.
  3. Go camping. You don’t have to go anywhere! The backyard’s as good a place as any. This will require some planning and equipment. If you don’t have a tent, a mat will do. Let your kids prepare a day pack. Cook up some picnic food. Let them experience nature and the outdoors gradually. Show them how to build a fire, and don’t forget the marshmallows. This is actually a good time to cook your grilled fish or barbeque dinner too.
  4. Don’t stop with the lessons. You’d be amazed at how readily they hit the books when you suggest it. Check for unanswered pages on their school books. Good for at least a few minutes of peace and quiet, and you get to squeeze out the last drop of usefulness from these books. Plus, it will get their brains ready for the next school year.
  5. Visit the local library. This is the one thing that is hard to do during schooldays. Now that its summer and your children’s weekdays are free, find some time to get yourself a library card and introduce your child to the pleasure of reading and the magic of books at the library.
  6. Give your child a city tour. Make like a tour guide and see your hometown with new eyes. In the process, instill a sense of history and pride of place in your children. This, too, is a civics lesson in the making.
  7. Teach your teenager to drive. If you have a teenager who is of driving age, summer vacations are definitely the time to teach him driving skills. Don’t forget to emphasize the safety aspects of driving.
  8. Teach and play chess. Actually, any board game will do. Teach them the rules of the game. Spend hours on fun and popular classic games like Monopoly, Scrabble, Boggle, or Checkers. Games like Go Fish, the Memory game, or Old Maid are popular card games for smaller kids too. But of course, chess is in a class by itself. So I still recommend chess.
  9. Learn a sport together. Try to teach your kids a sport that you engaged in during your childhood. You will be surprised at how much you still can learn and yet how much of that stock knowledge you can pass on. An alternative is traditional Filipino games. Have fun reliving your own childhood this summer. Teach them games like patintero, jolen, tagu-taguan, luksong tinik, tumbang preso, sipa, or a quiet game of sungka.
  10. Get creative with painting or music sessions. A writing project will do as well. Get them the materials and research on the basics of drawing, coloring, craftmaking, piano, voice, or guitar. Remember, we are not trying to raise Michelangelos or Mozarts here. The idea is to learn something new this summer as you all have some fun. You could get down and dirty too with your own art materials. Trust me, its fun!
16 years and 3 sons after, and she finally thinks she can be a mom blogger. Kelly is an artist and writer who loves to stare at a blade of grass on her good days. On bad days, she drinks inordinate amounts of coffee and multitasks as her soul dreams of mountains unclimbed and her warm soft bed. She is torn by both visions. Her favorite color is blue-green.


Jedi said...

can't wait for diego to be able to do all these!! =)

Anonymous said...

Thanks Jedi for commenting and we hope Diego will get to try out his first few summer activities as well! :)

- Stef, Mom Notes co-blogger

Anonymous said...

I really think parents take artistic learning for granted when it's crucial for kids to develop creativity and self-confidence.

I already enrolled my 8-year old Claire in an visual/performing arts workshop in the National Library after I happened to come across a discounted offer at Buyanihan.com. Some of the facilitators are well-known theater actors (Kuya Bodjie!) so I just jumped at the opportunity, hehe :)

Just thought I'd share it with my fellow mommies in case you're still looking for a workshop.


artnanay said...

Kuya Bodjie of Batibot?! WOW!! Tell us how it goes ha

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