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10 Free Summer Activities for Kids

10 Free Summer Activities for Kids

When summer rolls around and school lets out, many kids have too much time and not enough activities to keep them busy. For many families on limited budgets, multiple family vacations and trips to amusement parks aren't always an option. Fortunately, there are a wide variety of free summer activities for kids which can be done at home or in your local community.

1. Encourage Fort Building

Almost every adult has fond memories from their childhood of building either blanket or couch cushion forts with their friends. Children love having a space to call their own and encouraging them to build their own fort can keep them busy practically all day for free.

2. Free Kids Workshops

While Home Depot normally caters to adults looking to remodel a kitchen or renovate a bathroom by offering free training workshops they will also focus on kids for certain activities. Co-sponsorships during movie releases and with other companies like LEGO mean children have an opportunity to learn skills for free which may benefit them as they grow up.

3. Free Day Camps

Bass Pro retail shops host free summer day camps for children which is a great way to expose them to a variety of outdoor activities from hunting, fishing and camping. As summer rolls around, more information is normally posted on the company's website or in their blog which will list times and locations in your area.

4. Go For A Nature Walk

The more activity the better when it comes to keeping your kids busy. Going for a nature walk gives them the opportunity to appreciate the outdoors while getting fresh air and exercise. Don't let them waste their childhood in front of the TV or a video game day after day.

5. Have A Craft Day

Every household has enough raw materials for days worth of crafting. Scotch tape, glue, egg cartons, cloth scraps, construction paper, toothpicks, yarn and anything else you can think of can be used to have a craft day where they can embrace their creativity and create anything that comes to mind.

6. Create Treasure Quests

Your house and backyard provides a surprising number of locations with which to create a treasure hunt. Using a paper bag which has had the edges torn off and lightly burnt and drawn with an intricately laid out treasure map can be perfect to create a day of excitement. Be sure to make the treasure quest creative and memorable.

7. Public Library Events

Many local public libraries focus on family related events throughout the summer such as movie showings, workshops and various reading programs. There is no cost associated with using a public library and many of the events are geared specifically towards children.

8. Summer Reading Contests

Reading is often seen as homework for children during the school year. It is important to keep them reading during summer and expose them to different books which are fun and ignite their imagination. Barnes & Noble offers a free summer reading program which gives a child one free book for every eight books that they read. Use the contest to motivate them while they develop a love of reading.

9. Hollywood Movie Day

Virtually everyone has a cell phone with a camera which can take quality video. Many computers also come with movie creation software for free as part of the operating system. Work with your kids to create a small production using old clothes for costumes, creating a script, building various sets and putting all the pieces together.

10. Creative Costume Time

Most families will already have a few costumes they've used in Halloween's past. Use this to your advantage and have a costume day where the kids can run around being ninjas or princesses or their favorite cartoon characters. You can even use old clothes to create other costumes that they can help design and build.

Image by: AForestFrolic