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50 screen-free activities for kids to do over summer break, indoors and out (#40 - #50). Post 5 of 5

This is a series of 5 posts. We will post each Monday in August.

40. Learn solitaire. Remember when our own parents used to say “play solitaire!” when we were bored? Time to teach your kids how to play. There are more than 150 variations of solitaire to choose from!

41. Set up a bike car wash. We discovered this clever drive-through bike wash idea a few years back when we were looking for fun block party activities and ideas, and it’s still a top favorite screen-free summer activity of ours. If you have older kids with engineering minds, let them set this up themselves.

42. Put on a puppet show or a play. Kids are masters at being total hams, and if you’ve got uninhibited kids, have them put together a play (you should see Kristen and Liz’s tweens and teens taking on Mean Girls Broadway!) , a medley of songs, or funny sketches.

They can write parody songs, something kids love. Or if your kids are a little more shy, let them hide behind a table or box and put on a show with puppets or finger puppets. Pssst…it doesn’t have to be on TikTok either.

43. Clean something. I’m serious. Have the kids organize one shelf, one drawer, or the toys in the garage.

44. Build something. Use your LEGO sets. Make a fairy house from an old milk carton. Turn a Pringles can into a hot-dog roasting oven. Hand them a box of popsicle sticks and say GO. Get creative!

45. Plant a garden. If you have a big back yard, grab some gardening toys for kids and plant some tomatoes and squash. If you’re in an apartment, set some herbs by the windowsill. Or find a community garden you can help tend over the summer. There’s nothing quite like seeing actual food you can eat come from a seed you planted.

We also have some wonderful ideas for planting a fairy garden, no matter how much space you have.

46. Make popsicles. Nothing hits the spot like an ice-cold popsicle on a hot summer day, but it’s even more satisfying when you make them yourself. A ZOKU popsicle mold will freeze them really fast, but we’re also fans of old school popsicle molds — especially if you use one of these gourmet popsicle recipes. These striped popsicles at The View from Great Island are so fun.

47. Perform a science experiment. Have your kids experienced the joy of Mentos in a Diet Coke? Have you created a storm in a glass jar? Or made a volcano out of vinegar and baking soda? It is so much fun.

Pinterest is a wealth of ideas, or try our comprehensive guide to science experiments for kids on Cool Mom Tech — it’s sorted by age, from K-12.

Or for a truly screen-free experience pick up Mike Adamick’s Dad’s Book of Awesome Science Experiments or try some of our favorite kitchen science experiments that don’t involve slime at all, instead.

48. Write your own comic book. Download these free printable comic book pages to give life to your own superhero. If your kid isn’t as into comics, prompt them to conjure up a fairy tale, create a how-to manual, or write a play.

49. Play tag. During the day, play TV tag where you have to name your favorite TV show to get “unfrozen.” Or, at night, play flashlight tag where you’re caught when the light hits you. It’s one of our teams’ best summer screen-free activity memories from our own childhoods.

50. Join the National Park Service’s Junior Ranger program. You can download the booklet and do work to earn badges throughout the summer, then make plans for a family trip to one of our amazing National Parks. If a trip isn’t in your near future, you can still send in your completed booklet to receive your badges.


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