Low Cost Fun Activities
It's summer time. Have you heard these words from your child? "I'm bored!"
Having a few fun activities available can help everyone have a fun
summer. When selecting low cost activities, keep in mind the interests
of you and your child. Also, think about the amount of time available
to do the activity.
Let your child be an active player in the decision process. Put a list
of possible ideas in a jar and have your child pick one or two and make
a choice. Your time and resources will be important.
Check out the local newspapers for planned events.
Listed below are fun activities to do at home.
- Plant vegetable and flower seeds and watch them grow in the ground
or in containers.
- Help your child draw a map of your house or apartment.
- They could draw the block or neighborhood.
- Have an evening to play board games like Junior Monopoly, Game of
Life, Scrabble, checkers or card games like UNO. Have pizza and make
it a festive time.
- Try some creativity ideas. Let the children create the puppets for
the puppet show. Or put problem-solving puzzles together; tell jokes
and stories. Have a spelling bee; experiment with bubbles; make a scavenger
hunt as a walk in your neighborhood; or play charades.
- Play simple outdoor games like jump rope or hop scotch. Fly a kite
or rollerblade. Cook a family barbecue or let your child bake something
and give it away to a friend. Rent or borrow a video from a friend and
make your own popcorn, pop or juice and watch it as a family. You can
pause the movie for the needed bathroom break. Start a collection by
organizing baseball cards, buttons, stickers or rocks.
Listed below are fun activities to do in the community.
- Visit the local library to see their selections of videos, books,
and programs. Have your child find a book on puppet making or kites
or cookbooks for kids. Then pick an activity to do with the kids.
- Enjoy your local park or forest preserve by packing a lunch. Take
some games or frisbee and play in the park.
- Eat breakfast out as a family. It is often more reasonable than other
- Attend the under attended local events in your neighborhood like
Little League, softball, soccer or community band concerts.
- Experience a culture by eating at an ethnic restaurant.
- Going to a movie, try the matinee or second run theatres, as the
ticket price will be less.
- Be part of the park district programs or rent a rowboat on a lake
for the afternoon.
- Go window shopping in a town with different types of shops.
- Visit your county fair and local festivals. There are exhibits and
parades to watch. Be a part of your community fun.
- Most museums have a free or reduced price day. Visit an art, children's,
or science museum. Maybe your child would like to go to a planetarium
- Don't try to conquer the whole museum in one day. Think about what
your child can handle.
- Swim at the local pool or at the beach.
Prepared by: Susan Taylor, Extension Educator,
Consumer and Family Economics,
University of Illinois Extension.
Manteno Extension Center.
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