Finish Off The Summer: 9 Best Outdoor Activities To Do With Kids in 2021
We still have half of summer left and before we know it, it'll be cold and snowy again. Make the most of the rest of summer before school starts by having your kids participate in fun activities outside. There are so many things to choose from but here are some activities we have done this summer with our two toddlers, that they have loved doing.
Depending on where you live, you may have many options for fruit picking all throughout the summer and fall. So far this year we have taken the kids to go strawberry picking in early summer and blueberry picking midsummer. Cherries, raspberries, and peach picking are some other fruits that happen mid to late summer as well. Of course, you can continue to pick into the fall with apples, grapes, and pumpkins.
After you've picked your fruit, start another activity by baking or cooking with your kids. You can make cakes, breads, pies, or even make homemade jams and jellies to can so you can enjoy the sweet fruits all winter long.
Visit A Local Playground
Whether you have your own yard or live in an apartment, your kids can still enjoy going on swings and slides. Search for local playgrounds near you and visit them. Many times schools will allow the public to use their playgrounds after school hours and on weekends. We learned that going to the school playgrounds were less busy than going to public parks. Another tip we learned is it's less busy if you go around dinner time and it's often cooler outside because the sun is setting. Try these tips out next time and you may have the whole playground to yourselves.
There are so many options when choosing where to go swimming. If you have your own yard and pool, then that makes it easy. Even if you only have a deck, you can get a kiddie pool to fill up on those hot days. There are also easy to set up (and not permanent), decently sized inflatable pools you can purchase.
If you still don't have the space to use your own pool, you can visit lakes and rivers in your area. Look for national parks you can visit that have a beach and make a day of it. A lot of the time they'll have playgrounds, walking trails, and places to picnic also.
Make A Mud Kitchen
I first saw the idea of a mud kitchen last summer and thought it was genius. We lived in a townhouse and didn't have space to set one up. We have since moved, and this year we built a mud kitchen for our kids. A mud kitchen is basically and outdoor kitchen for kids to play with and "cook" or create concoctions out of whatever they find in nature including mud, sticks, pinecones, leaves, and acorns.
You can usually gather up some materials for free and use scrap wood or pallets to make your mud kitchen. Look for "buy nothing" groups on Facebook and ask for sinks, pallets, and other scrap materials you can use to personalize your kids' mud kitchen. If you're not handy, or just don't feel like building one yourself, you can buy one here. I got all of the bowls, wooden spoons, and cups at the dollar store.
Go Out For Ice Cream
A simple and classic summer activity, going out for ice cream. We are lucky to have three ice cream stands near us and we often go out on hot summer nights to get ice cream after dinner. One of the places we visit has chickens that roam around and picnic tables we can sit at. The kids love being able to get a cup of ice cream all to themselves.
Another option if you're not close to any ice cream stands, is to make your own! You can use this ice cream ball to churn your own ice cream easily, by rolling the ball around.
Sign Up For Summer Camps
There are summer camps available for kids as young 2 years old. This year, I wanted my three year old to get out and socialize with kids her age and have fun. I found MyGym had preschool camps and summer camps for kids her age throughout the whole summer. MyGym has locations all over the United States and provide fun activities such as singing, gymnastics, dancing, crafts and more they do during their themed camps. We signed up for Disney day, Princess day, and MyGym Spirit Week day. She's only been to one so far, but is very excited to go to her two other days in August.
There are plenty of summer camps available for kids of all ages, so just search in your area for what's available. YMCA is another place that has camps for kids in the summer.
Visit A Farm
We have visited local farms in our area to see and feed the animals such as goats, ducks, chickens, and horses. Many of the fruit picking places around us also have animals, so it's a great two in one activity.
Make Tie-Dye Shirts
Since it's warm outside, set up a tie-dying station and tie-dye clothes. You don't have to worry about the kids making a mess because you'll be outside, and maybe after they can run through sprinklers to clean themselves off. Tie-dying and creating their own clothes out of a plain white shirt is a rewarding activity that promotes creativity. One tip is to take old stained clothes and use them for the tie-dye projects to give them new life.
Look for places you can take the kids to go camping. You can sleep in tents, roast s'mores and hotdogs over the fire, and go hiking or swimming. There are many places that offer "glamping" options now, that provide little cabins to camp in so you still have the camping feel, but with more amenities. The kids will have fun playing out in the woods and getting dirty.
Grow A Garden
Since garden plants are typically started in the spring, you may already have a garden going. Let the kids pick the crops once they're ready and they'll have fun doing it. My daughter discovered the sugar snap peas in the garden and picks some every time she is outside. You can research plants that you can grow inside during the winter, or maybe start planting perennials for the next year. Kids like to play in dirt, so have them dig the holes to plant seeds or already grown plants and bury them back up.
Although we are halfway done with summer, there is still so much you can do to make the most of your time. Keep your kids active so they have a memorable and fun summer before it's time to go back to school and start up extra curricular activities again.