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Five EASY hands-on activities to do with your kids this summer

By Summer Lane

Photo: Deposit

Are you itching to find a way to entertain your kids that doesn’t include tablets, television, or video games?

Let’s face it – sometimes, it’s just easier to turn on an episode of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, but the lazy days of summer are deceptively fleeting. Your kiddos are so special and precious. Find time to engage with them through a few hands-on activities before the summer ends and the school rush begins!

Make your own sidewalk-chalk paint

This is such a fun activity that kids of all ages will enjoy! To make this at home for my daughter, I simply mix one cup of cornstarch together with one cup of water. I separate the mixture into several small cups and then add whatever colors I want to each cup. Use wide, soft brushes and let the kids go to town painting the sidewalk! It’s washable (of course!) and non-toxic.

Garden together

Whether you have an apartment balcony or a homestead on the range, you can start a small garden with your kids and watch your plants come to life! Gardening teaches kids a variety of skills: patience, endurance, and satisfaction that comes with the long-awaited harvest. Easy vegetables to start with include cherry tomatoes, yellow squash, bell peppers, and practically any herb. I like to intersperse my herbs with my main vegetables so that they get shade in the hot summer sun. I have tufts of basil hidden beneath squash leaves and plumes of peppermint insulating my jalapenos from sunburn!

Swim or walk together

If the weather allows, go for a walk in the cooler hours of the summer morning and enjoy some time strolling and chatting together. Let your kids ride their bikes or scooters. Say hi to the neighbors if you live in town. If you’re a country mouse (does anyone else get that reference?), play a game of scavenger hunt and see which one of your kiddos can complete their list first!

If you have a pool available to you, swim with your kids! It’s refreshing and rejuvenating – and it’s great exercise!

Get hands-on in the kitchen

Kids love to learn and most of all, most kids love to be independent. It’s often easier and faster to cook solo in the kitchen – most moms will likely agree! – but including your children in the food prep and cooking process is a wonderful way to teach them real-life kitchen skills while spending quality time together. Get the whole family involved and make it a fun event! Kids will also get to feel a swell of well-earned pride when they see their food laid out on the table for dinner.

Read together

It sounds so simple – but this can be a cool activity that you can do with your kids that will not only entertain them but teach them how to sit patiently and enjoy a story woven by words alone, not visual images on a screen! My daughter and I love to read classics together. She’s too young to read the original texts of the classics that I hold dear to my heart, so I purchased a set of classic abridged novels that are appropriate for the elementary level. So far, we’ve read The Wizard of Oz, The Call of the Wild, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Black Beauty, and Treasure Island. We’re currently working on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Stuart Little.


Check out this cute how-to YouTube video on how to make sidewalk chalk paint!





The opinions in this article are specific to its author, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the entire Counter Culture Mom team. This specific article was written by Summer Lane, and may not be reproduced, except to quote for reviews or interviews, without the express permission of the author. 




Summer Lane is the #1 bestselling author of 30 books, including the hit Collapse Series and Resurrection Series. She is an experienced journalist and columnist who reports on news within the U.S. and abroad. She is the Associate Editor for Right Side Broadcasting Network. Additionally, she analyzes politics and policies on The Write Revolution.

Summer is also a mom and wife who enjoys rural country living, herding cats, and gardening. She is passionate about writing about women’s issues, parenting, and politics from a theologically-grounded perspective that points readers to the good news of the gospel.

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