When we think of summer, we think of lots of summer camps, pool parties, sun protection solutions ,sprinkles – we all love being in the great outdoors. But there are some days when the heat just gets to be too much and we have to stay inside.
For when you’re not in the mood to brave the heat and head out to some of the awesome, child-friendly spots the city has to offer, here are some indoor activities you could be doing this summer.
Have a movie party
Instead of just turning on the air conditioner and popping in a movie, why not invite some of your kids’ friends over for a movie party? Have each parent bring a fun snack (popcorn, ice pops, ice cream) and watch a kid-friendly flick together.
Build a tent inside
While you may not have room for an open tent indoors all the time, create a tent indoors. It’ll keep the little ones busy all day and playing with dolls, cars, whatever your kid’s favourite toys are feels new when a tent is involved.
Our personal favourite – when a sheet and 2 chairs could be enough to build an entire world for ourselves. Introduce your little ones to the world of make believe; simply pull a sheet over 2 chairs, hang a cloth from a hook from the ceiling, or pull a sheet over a clothes stand, and create a private space for the little ones to hang out.
Make frozen ice pops together
I -Scream, You -Scream, We all scream for ice cream! Pick up some of your kids favorite fruits and puree them. Put them into exciting molds or cups with sticks. Freeze until solid and watch the kids slurping away on their frosty treats.
Use play dough and craft your favorite summer things
The play dough is way different then what we got our fingers on when we were kids. Get the kids to craft something interesting with all the colourful play dough lying around the house – flowers, horses, butterflies, airplanes, just about anything they love creating.
Maybe get out a favourite story book and try building one of their favourite characters with play dough!
Write a summer book
While technology has killed paper and pencils to a great extent, try something different this summer. Get your little one to maintain a summer book; list out places they visit, things they do everyday, a list of words they learn during summer break, the movies they watched, holiday favourites – add everything they do through the summer. What a great keepsake.
Have a home treasure hunt.
Gather up some toys and treats (treats that hide well, like lollipops, things in packages) and hide them for your kid to find. Make the treasure hunt fun by putting on some music when the kids are on the search. Once the music stops, the hunt stops, and that’s when you can start giving hints to find the ones still not discovered.
Create with cardboard
Pull out all the cardboard boxes you’ve been stacking up for years and create! Let the imaginations flow. A box can be anything: a train, music system, ramps for cars, an airplane, a house. Don’t forget to take pictures and pin it up on their soft board. Remember, if they’ve created something, they are going to be super possessive about it.
Indoor Sensory Activity (for the toddlers)
Shaving cream is a wonderful indoor sensory activity that toddlers love. Squeeze some on a pan and just let them have fun. Add food colouring if you like, this gets them super excited! You might want to put them in an old shirt and maybe lots of newspaper on the floor. It does get messy
Organize Indoor Games
Because as Moms, I think we all understand that Kids + Energy + Inside is an equation that can equal chaos and inevitable disaster. Here are some interesting ones I’ve tried.
Hopscotch: Yes,brings back some awesome memories! Make a simple hopscotch “board” and your kids will think it’s just the coolest thing that it’s inside!
Balloon Blow: Set up a “course” and see if your child can blow a balloon all the way to the finish line. They’ll have to do lots of army crawls working their upper body and core strength along the way.
Crocodile Alley: One of our favorite go-to inside games of all time. Simply scatter some “islands” or “boats” across the floor (use pillows, stuffed animals, books, etc) and then have your kids jump from one to the next without falling into the “water” and risk being eaten by a hungry Crocodile. Bonus points if Mom plays said hungry Crocodile and chomps after them when they stumble!
Mirror, Mirror: Stand face to face with your child, about a foot apart, and have them attempt to copy all your movements. Reach up and stretch to the sky. Do 10 jumping jacks. Run in place. Act like a monkey. Make it fun and you’ll both be working up a sweat in no time. Then switch roles and copy your child – they won’t be able to hold back the laughter (and neither will you!).
Alphabet Hunt: Have your kids go around the house with their pretty little baskets, collecting items that start with each letter of the alphabet (A for apple, B for Barbie, C for Crayons, etc) – give them a checklist to mark off each one as they go. Time them so they run!
Tell us how you plan to keep the little ones busy this summer in the comments below