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120 Summer Boredom Busters for any Budget

Summer break is a time for reconnecting with your kids, long days and fun nights, and those dreaded words of “Mom, I’m bored!” If you want to end those cries for fun, have this list handy for things you can do with your kids all summer long. Best of all, these summer boredom busters can accommodate any budget!

This post is brought to you by Dixie. All opinions are my own. 

120 Summer Boredom Busters



120 Summer Boredom Busters

Free Ideas

  1. Go outside and play a game of tag.
  2. Go to the library and check out five books each, then sit outside in the shade and have a read-a-thon.
  3. Play board games outdoors.
  4. Go on a bug hunt and take pictures of the bugs you find. Upload those to your computer and make a slide-show with them.
  5. Have a picnic using food you already have in the pantry and fridge.
  6. Go on a nature scavenger hunt.
  7. Have an alphabet treasure hunt outside and in the neighborhood.
  8. Go park hopping! Try a different park every week.
  9. Make pet rocks with stuff you have at home and rocks you find on the ground.
  10. Visit the local splash pad.
  11. Play parachute with a large sheet.
  12. Play hide-and-seek with flashlights at night.
  13. Catch fireflies and release them.
  14. Have a movie day and build a fort.
  15. Using masking tape, string, or anything else you have lying around, make a course for racecars and have your kids play with it.
  16. Volunteer. It is free for you and helps someone out.
  17. Watch the sun rise or set.
  18. Read the classics to your children over the summer.
  19. Make a backyard campsite.
  20. Blow out dandelions and make a wish or string them together to make a flower crown if they are still yellow blooms.
  21. Have a dance party in the kitchen!
  22. Cook dinner together and film it like you’re on a cooking show.
  23. Make a hopscotch course using sticks or sidewalk chalk.
  24. Write and put on a play using things you have at home as a costume.
  25. Using old boxes, build a fort.
  26. Using old boxes, build a city for teddy bears.
  27. Have a teddy bear parade.
  28. Climb a tree.
  29. Go to the community fireworks display on the 4th of July.
  30. Put on a puppet or shadow puppet show.
  31. Search for animals and shapes in the clouds.

Cheap Ideas $

  1. Using an old sheet, make art on the lawn. You may need to replace the sheet or buy paint.
  2. Make a homemade bird feeder. The materials for this should be easy to find and cheap.
  3. Buy some cheap spray bottles and fill with water for a water fight. Add in washable paint to spray large poster boards instead of each other.
  4. Make toy parachutes out of paper or cloth. Attach them to toys, then head to the park to drop them from slides and swings.
  5. Buy some sidewalk chalk and play games on the sidewalk with them.
  6. Buy cheap dollar store accessories and sidewalk chalk. Draw sidewalk chalk dolls and dress them up!
  7. Buy the stuff to wash your car and have a backyard car wash. Let kids wash their bikes and toys, too!
  8. Have an art show. Get your kids to make the art, pass out invitations, and host it in the backyard.
  9. Make root beer floats or ice cream sundaes.
  10. Buy cheap glowsticks, attach them to your kids, and play tag in the dark.
  11. Make cheap wind chimes.
  12. Bake cookies for the neighbors and deliver them.
  13. Make a boredom jar out of an old bar and add in strips of papers for ideas that you can do cheaply and easily. Anytime your child is bored, have them pull a card.
  14. Go on a hike and pack a picnic lunch.
  15. Play jacks or marbles.
  16. Organize an end of summer garage sale.
  17. Get neighbors, friends, and family together and play a sporting game, like baseball or soccer.
  18. Go to a local sporting event.
  19. Exercise with Hula Hoops and Jump ropes.
  20. Put on a neighborhood concert.
  21. Take a drive to see the sites.
  22. Feed the ducks at a local park.
  23. Write to a pen-pal.
  24. Get out of the city and go stargazing.
  25. Set up a slip-n-slide or tarp and have fun cooling off with water.
  26. Have a week of Bento Box lunches to add fun to mealtime.
  27. Pick your own produce. Find a farm with strawberries, tomatoes, flowers, or whatever else you’d like and pick your own produce.
  28. Make flower arrangements out of wildflowers your find in fields and on the sides of the road. Then, deliver them to friends and family.
  29. Make S’Mores.
  30. Build a tower out of plastic cups.
  31. Experiment with new hairdos.
  32. Set up a bubble machine in the backyard and run through the bubbles.

Mid-range Ideas $$

  1. Make a Lemonade Stand or a Baked Goods Stand.
  2. Start a small flower or container garden.
  3. Visit the Farmer’s Market, then come home and cook up the treats you found.
  4. Make a sandbox in a container with a lid.
  5. Create your own outdoor movie theater, complete with the concessions stand.
  6. Make homemade ice cream.
  7. Take everyone out for a nice lunch and frozen yogurt. Getting out of the house can make a world of difference.
  8. Build a tree fort.
  9. Pack up a cooler and hit the lake.
  10. Make friendship bracelets.
  11. Go rock climbing.
  12. Have a banana split party and invite people over to make their own sundaes or splits.
  13. Buy a glow-in-the-dark bowling set and set it up in your driveway.
  14. Visit a local museum during the day when prices are reduced.
  15. Go on a tour of your city and find new and exciting things to try.
  16. Set up a grocery store outside and have all the local kids play.
  17. Go camping.
  18. Organize a block party.
  19. Host a large sleepover for your kids.
  20. Get into GeoCaching.
  21. Attend a local theater performance
  22. Host a 4th of July party.
  23. Have a “make your own pizza” night and let everyone make their own pizza.
  24. Have an at-home spa day and make all the stuff you will need.
  25. Take a canoe trip.
  26. Go fishing.
  27. Play miniature golf.
  28. Attend flea markets or garage sales once a week to see what treasures you can find. Have fun repurposing older items together, too!
  29. Start a collection – you could collect rocks, bugs, sand, stamps, you name it!
  30. Make your own sno-cones.

Expensive Ideas $$$

  1. Send them to summer day camp.
  2. Send them away to camp for a week or two.
  3. Visit a local amusement park.
  4. Attend a festival and make a day of having fun.
  5. Visit Disney World!
  6. Spend a day or two at the beach.
  7. Go on a mini-vacation for the weekend.
  8. Take the whole family out for a night of bowling.
  9. Go see a movie with the family.
  10. Enroll your kids in art classes.
  11. Sign up for a local sports team.
  12. Go to a waterpark.
  13. Go to a zoo.
  14. Go to an aquarium.
  15. Build a dollhouse and have your kids help.
  16. Host a pool party.
  17. Get a gym membership for the whole family.
  18. Go on a shopping spree for new summer clothes.
  19. Spend a day having a spa treatment for everyone.
  20. Sign up for Mommy’s Day Out twice a week- you get a break and they get to play with friends.
  21. Re-do your kids’ bedrooms with their help.
  22. Go skydiving or scuba diving.
  23. Visit a professional sporting event.
  24. Go on a helicopter ride.
  25. Go to a summer concert.
  26. Ride in a hot air balloon.
  27. Go to an ATV park and enjoy riding and playing in the mud.

Which summer bored busters will you try this year?

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nicole dz

Monday 16th of June 2014

There are so many endless possibilities for summer boredom. This is a great list! I say get outdoors and let the fun begin.

Christina Gould

Monday 16th of June 2014

These are great ideas. I really like the ideas for a picnic or to climb a tree. It seems like nobody does those simple things anymore. Thanks for sharing!

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