Summer is finally here!!! There are so many fun and unique cheap summer activities in this list; I bet there will be some kids’ activities you’ve never thought of before! Your kids will go crazy for idea #8!
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Cheap Summer Activities For Those Lazy, Hazy Days
Summer days are long and full of potential. Today, children are more prone to spending their summer vacations inside on the computer, phone, or in front of the television or video game.
First thing’s first, unplug!
Get them fed, dressed, and outside with these fun summertime activities!
You can snag my Summer Bucket List printable for free here with 50 free or cheap summer activity ideas!
1. Kick It ‘Old School’ with Cheap Summer Activities From Your Childhood
Show your children all the fun things you did as a child; hopscotch, jacks, hide and go seek, bike races, horseshoes, red-light-green-light….you remember!
2. Grow a Garden
One of my favorite cheap summer activities is growing a garden.
Starter garden kits for kids are available everywhere and are very inexpensive.
Let them choose the kinds of flowers or other plants they want to grow. After you buy the seeds, stop by your local library and have them find books on their chosen plant(s).
They will learn how to take care of their plants (and get some reading in).
Here are other gardening posts you might like to check out:
- 9 Ways to make money gardening (up to $1000/month!)
- How to garden on a budget
- Top tips to landscape on a budget
- 5 DIY food gifts from your herb garden
3. Go On a Photo Walk
Photo walks are always a big hit. Pick up a couple of disposable cameras and take the kids down a trail. Better yet, get them an inexpensive digital camera that they can keep and reuse.
I just bought my daughter this camera for kids and she LOVES it. It was so cute watching her take pictures of different things that caught her eye. (A couple of highlights: many, many pictures of the ground, and our cat.)
I didn’t see this instant camera for kids when I was looking, but it is so cute! It’s like a little Polaroid camera for kids. 🙂
Let them take pictures of things that interest them and collect different items; then, after you develop the pictures, the kids can make frames using cardboard and the items they collected from the walk!
4. Cheap Summer Activities That Are Good for the Environment
Have an Earth Day in the summer!
Each week, one child gets to pick a place where they would like to help the Earth.
This can be picking up litter in the neighborhood or park, planting a tree, feeding ducks at a local lake, making bird nests from natural materials, etc.
Kids will come up with some creative ways to save their Earth!
5. Out With the Old, In With the New
Not your kids, but their toys!
Grab some empty boxes from the garage or local grocery store and ask each child to fill them with items they no longer play with or need.
At the end of the week, hold a garage sale where each child gets to price their items and donate their money to a charity of their choice.
Here’s a great article on teaching kids about money management from an early age (including saving and donating!)
6. Cheap Summer Activities for Hot Days: Water Water Everywhere!
Remember water balloon fights? Those are one of the quintessential cheap summer activities that are a lot of fun and will probably never die out.
Go to the dollar store and stock up on water balloons!
Rules: No hitting in the face, no hitting people not playing, no hitting cars or other houses, and everyone is responsible for the clean-up.
7. Camp Out-In
Am I the only one who has never slept through the night while outside in a tent? Make the living room a rainforest with fake trees and homemade decorations, grab the tent, and camp in!
You can also camp out in your backyard (this is a huge hit with most kids) or ya know, actually go camping. Camping is already a cheap summer activity and here are 5 extra tips to camp on a budget.
8. Have a monster bubble bath
Get a kiddy pool (there are lots on Amazon for <$30) and fill it will soap and water.
They won’t know what to do with themselves, and you’ve just killed two birds with one stone (fun + bath)!
A family in our neighborhood has this flamingo pool and my daughter has heart eyes every time we pass it. She already has a hippo pool though (similar to this pool), and I feel like that is enough large inflatable animals for our small backyard.
Additionally, hand each child a bubble wand so they can blow bubbles.
9. Cheap Summer Activities That Can Be Gifts: Make Jewelry
You can buy a big bucket of beads for less than $20, plus some string $3.
Set out a blanket, grab some child-safe scissors, the beads, and string, some juice boxes, and sit out and create.
Homemade jewelry makes great gifts for next school year’s teachers!
10. Create a Summertime Scrapbook
As summer nears the end, create a scrapbook with your kids of all the activities they did during the last couple of months.
You’ll refresh their memory, bring up great conversation topics, and give them something to look forward to next summer!
At an art supply store or on Amazon, you can pick up mini scrapbooks, one for each child to do.