Summer break is meant to give kids a chance to relax and have fun, but too much free time can cause them to lose some of the knowledge they gained during the school year. Just because class is dismissed doesn’t mean learning has to stop. Check out this list of engaging and affordable activities to keep kids discovering all summer-long.
- Get cooking. Consider this a science lesson, the kitchen = your lab. Show your young chef how to carefully measure out ingredients and mix them together to create delicious masterpieces. There are lots of simple recipes available online for kids to follow, with your supervision. If you’re feeling daring, you can even encourage some experimentation. Just don’t mix vinegar and baking soda together, unless you're prepared for a volcanic reaction.
- Plant a garden. Pick a patch in your yard that gets the right amount of sunlight and see what you can get to sprout. Don't have a yard? Get some herb boxes for your balcony or patio, or consider joining a nearby community garden. Start with a few easier plants to grow, like sunflowers or lavender. You can also plant tomatoes, basil, and other edible ingredients that will come in handy in the kitchen.
- Learn a foreign language. Ever wanted to know how to say “hello” in French, or how to write “love” in Japanese? Take an introduction level language class together this summer, either in person or online, and learn the basics of a new tongue. Rather learn at home? Download a language learning app on your phone or tablet and work through the online lessons together. Practice speaking every day around your home and you’ll be sure to impress your other family members.
- Take a hike. Not only is getting out in nature great for your physical and mental health, but it gives your child an opportunity to learn about the local wildlife and habitat. Bird watching, plant and tree identification, and photography are just some of the activities you can enjoy while taking a stroll through the woods or at the park down the street.
- Go to the library. Libraries aren’t just for checking out hardcover books anymore. You can also borrow audiobooks, ebooks, movies, and at some locations, even cooking tools, fishing poles, and musical instruments. All you have to do is sign up for a free library card. Many public libraries also have a list of events for the summer. You can find public libraries near you by clicking here.