We're about a month in to summer vacation over here but have recently had plenty of activities to fill our time with family in town. This week we've all been working a little harder to find things to do to keep ourselves occupied and entertained. Yesterday the weather couldn't decide if it needed to be nice and sunny or full of thunderstorms so we came in and out accordingly. In between two rain showers and after a lot of bickering about taking turns and getting upset because someone frowned at someone else I had the bright idea to utilize our sidewalk chalk.
Pinterest is full of games and activities to fill summer days but I especially love when a game can also be a reminder to encourage each other and teach cooperation. I drew a few shapes on the ground and filled them with points. Then I drew two lines for the kids to throw their rocks from and made a little roster for them to keep track of their points. Ruby can't draw her numbers or do addition yet so Sebastian's job was to help her keep track of her score. Ruby practiced how to wait her turn. Sebastian got some handwriting and math practice and Ruby worked on her high five.
Sebastian wasn't really interested in joining us until I told him there were prizes involved. One for the person with the best sportsmanship and one for the kid with the highest points. When he got upset that Ruby hit the 50 box first I reminded him he could win a prize for sportsmanship by telling her she did great and giving her a high five but that throwing a fit didn't win him anything. It worked! Their attitudes shifted from selfish and cranky to cooperative and helpful.
There are tons of ways to keep kids occupied all summer but I tend to gravitate to things that don't require too much to set up, don't cost much money if any, and can keep them engaged for awhile. Is that me being lazy? Ha!
What are your go-to activities to keep kids from whining about nothing to do?