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77 Fun and Cheap Summer Activities for Kids {beat the summer boredom}

77 Fun and Cheap Summer Activities for Kids {beat the summer boredom}


How far did you make into summer before you heard “I’m bored!” It wasn’t long here lol. Luckily these summer activities will help break up the monotony and hopefully build some memories.

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There are games, crafts, things to do, things to make and things to eat. Enjoy our list of cheap summer activities for kids!

Need a summer bucket list? You can print this one out at home and put it on your wall to check off all the things you want to do this summer!

If you don’t feel like DIY’ing it, check out some these inexpensive ideas:

Reusable Water Balloons

Inflatable Splash Pad

Seek and Find Outdoor Scavenger Hunt

Automatic Bubble Machine– this adds a magical backdrop to all your summer days 🙂

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RELATED: Easy 4th of July Crafts for Toddlers

Fly Swatter Bubbles {easy summer fun for kids!}

Give traditional bubble blowing a fun spin with fly swatters! You probably have all the ingredients in your kitchen already.

Best of all, it’ll only cost about $3. A perfect summer activity.

  • Fly swatters (we used new ones)
  • Large tupperware container or plastic bowl (long and shallow is best)
  • Dish soap
  • Water
  • Corn syrup
  • Corn starch (corn flour in the UK)
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Easy Origami for Kids

Looking for a more calm activity to do with the kids? Try learning some easy origami. There are beginner friendly folds to try- from cats to houses.

easy origami for kids: models shown include the origami tulip, pinwheel, christmas tree, cat face, and sailboat
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Sunscreen Painting: STEAM For Kids

Do your kids strongly dislike putting on sunscreen? This activity will teach kids how and why sunscreen works- which might make them more inclined to put it on!

  • Sunscreen
  • Paint Brush
  • Black Construction Paper (or other dark colored paper)
Sunscreen painting STEAM activity
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RELATED: Refreshing Summer Drinks Your Kids Will LOVE

Build a Backyard Fort

Grab some outdoor approved blankets, pillows, sheets and make an epic fort!

Water Play for Toddlers Using Recycled Materials

Have fun with water play using recycled materials that are already around your home! It’s fun and a good way to teach about recycling.

A child pouring water from a recycled container into an empty milk jug
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Yummy Fun with Pizza Box Solar Oven Smores!

Create a super easy solar oven with an old pizza box and cling wrap to make some delicious s’mores. Your kids are gonna love this one… and you are too.

  • A sunny day
  • An empty pizza box
  • Plastic wrap (although a piece of glass, from a picture frame would work as well)
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Chop sticks or a 12 inch ruler
  • Graham Crackers
  • Marshmallows, (these chocolate-filled ones would be great!)
  • Chocolate melting wafers, a thin bar of chocolate
melting marshmallows and chocolate in a homemade solar oven
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Neighborhood Scavenger Hunts

Get the whole family involved and active with this neighborhood scavenger hunt. It’s fun and will create great memories.

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Park Scavenger Hunt Activity (for Local, State, and National Parks)

Heading to a park and wanting something to do with everyone? Grab a set of Park Scavenger Hunt printables!

Park Scavenger Hunt with Bench in Background
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Super Crazy Bubble Foam (with a secret ingredient)

Get the kids outside for some bubbly fun with bubble foam. Add toys, scoops, cups- whatever you want for hours of sensory play.

What you need:

Super Crazy Bubble Foam (with a secret ingredient)
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Go For a Bike Ride

Get out the bikes and go for a spin!

Easy DIY Tie Dye Tutorial {Don’t Overthink It}

If you have some old white t-shirts or clothes lying around and are prepared for a messy activity- tie-dye them!

  • Covered Surface.
  • Plastic Gloves.
  • Shirt or fabric you are dying.
  • Dye. Tie dye kits are perfect for at home tie dye projects.
  • Cling Wrap
  • Ziploc Bags
  • Rubber Bands or string
  • Stick or wooden spoon
  • Paper Towels for spills as needed
5 different tie dye shirt colors laying on a table
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Teaching Kids to Compost and Its Benefits

Teaching kids to compost is fun and practical. They’ll love learning about what happens to the food and why it’s good for the Earth.

Teaching Kids to Compost and Its Benefits
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How to Make DIY Puffy Paint Without Shaving Cream and Glue

Whip up a big batch of puffy paint with ingredients you definitely have. Kick back and watch the kids get creative painting outside!

  • Flour
  • Water
  • Washable Kids Paint
  • Large Mixing Bowl
  • Whisk
  • Silicone Spatula
  • Disposable Spoons
  • Clear plastic squirt bottles with lids
  • Funnel (optional)
How to Make Puffy Paint Without Shaving Cream and Glue (Super Easy Recipe!)
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Monarch Butterfly MATH Activities

Have fun creating the “butterflies” with your kids and get them excited about math.

  • Farafalle pasta, ideally the standard size as well as the Miniature sized Farafalle…its the butterfly-shaped pasta.
  • Food coloring. I’ve used Orange for the large butterflies and Blue for the smaller sized pasta
  • Vinegar or Rubbing Alcohol
  • Plastic zipper bag – this is a perfect activity for reusing a gently used bag
  • Permanent markers (like Sharpies)
Monarch craft using pasta
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Have a Water Fight

Blow up some water balloons, fill up the water guns or grab some reusable soaker balls. Game on!

How to Make a Fairy House (a Milk Jug Craft)

If you have an old milk jug lying around, this a perfect summer craft and looks so cute in your yard beside a tree!

  • Empty, cleaned and dried milk or water jug
  • Black fine point Sharpie marker
  • Utility knife
  • Self adhesive foam craft sheets in dark green, light green, brown, purple and pink
  • Artificial Flower
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • Moss craft sheet
  • Scissors
  • Green paper artificial grass (or just use crumpled green tissue paper)
How to Make a Fairy House (a Milk Jug Craft)
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Head to the outdoors with this Bigfoot Game!

Get everyone outdoors and laughing while playing the Bigfoot Game! It’ll be hard not to laugh at whoever is wearing these ridiculous feet.

Cardboard, sandals, balls, and tape are needed to create kid games for birthday parties outdoor.
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Put a Sprinkler Under the Trampoline

Have you put a sprinkler under the trampoline before? Hours of fun! Sometimes we add some soap- usually tear-free shampoo to keep soap mishaps from happening. Be aware that it does get VERY slippery!

“Painting” Baked Rocks

This is a really fun take on painting rocks- the crayons melt and make lovely designs. Plus get your kids involved in the “rock hunt.”

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Homemade Bag Ice Cream for Kids

This is fascinating for kids to watch and they get to reap the rewards of their hard work by eating the ice cream. Perfect on a summer day 🙂

Homemade bag ice cream is a fun edible science project that kids of all ages will love making as much as they love eating! From
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Kinetic Sand Recipe

Who knew kinetic sand was made so easily? I think I might be overpaying for kinetic sand at the store!

You’ll need:

  • Sand
  • Cornstarch
  • Oil
Kinetic Sand with a Cookie Cutter
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Beat the Heat with Ice Activities for Preschoolers

From ice painting to color mixing and rescuing frozen toys, these ice activities make great things to do in summer with little ones.

Child hand with painted Ice; Text : Easy ways for kids to play with ice.
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8 Awesome Summer Reading Programs for Kids

Check out this round up of summer reading programs for kids and pick your favorite. It’s a great way to encourage reading and win some fun prizes.

Lemonade popsicles

Get everyone helping with measurements and squeezing lemons. Once they’re frozen, reap the rewards of your hard work with these delicious homemade lemonade popsicles.

You’ll need:

  • Popsicle molds and sticks
  • 4 – 8 medium lemons (enough for ½ cup juice)
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • Approx. 2 cups water
Lemonade popsicles surrounded by fresh lemon slices and lemon leaves.
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The Cutest Watermelon Painted Rocks for Kids to Make

Any craft that involves going outside to gather supplies is great for kids!

Watermelon painted rocks
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Play Hopscotch

Keep it classic! Bust out the chalk and make a giant hopscotch game for everyone to play.

Balloon Boppers Kids Game

Balloon Boppers | DIY Craft | Games for Kids | Activities for Kids | Great for indoor or outdoor play | Click the photo for the instructions.
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DIY Solar System Kids Craft

DIY Solar System Kids Craft | Styrofoam Kit | Crafts for Kids | Space Projects for Kids | DIY Space Mobile |
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DIY Fireworks

DIY Fireworks + July 4th Party Tips #WaveYourFlagWithTampico #DrinkTampico
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Set Up a Lemonade Stand

Every kid has gotta do this at some point. If you don’t want to squeeze lemons just make some canned or powdered juice.

Printable Summer Activities For Kids Planner

A fun Summer Activities For Kids Planner Printable that will help you keep all of your family's summer activities organized. | OHMY-CREATIVE.COM | Summer Printable | Calendar Printable | Summer Reading List Printable | Summer Bucket List Printable | Tech Rules Printable for Kids | kids Printables | Kids Chore List Printable | Kids Summer Activities
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Easy Mason Jar Terrariums

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Simple Water Balloon Yoyos

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Masking Tape And Chalk Mural Craft

Looking for a fun outdoor kids activity? This Masking Tape And Chalk Mural Craft is perfect. Get details at
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Bird Watching with Kids | Free Bird Watching Journal

little boy with binoculars doing some bird watching with kids
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Kids Beach Scavenger Hunt (free printable!)

free printable beach scavenger hunt
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Glow in the Dark Kindness Rocks

glow in the dark kindness rocks
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Clear Glitter Slime Recipe

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Wrapped Walking Stick

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Keeping the Kids Busy with an Ice Dig!

Keeping the Kids Busy with an Ice Dig!
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Spring Flowers Sun-catcher

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Where Art Meets Math…

Egg Carton Nature Project for Kids

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Tropical Pupsicles: Homemade Dog Popsicles!

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Edible Banana Marshmallow Pudding Slime

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Frozen Castles For Melting Summer Fun!

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Nature Scavenger Hunt for Kids Printable

Nature Scavenger Hunt for Kids
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How to Encourage Kindness with this Summer Kind Kids Challenge

Looking for the perfect summer activities for kids? Use these summer kindness activities for kids because kindness matters. #kindnessmatters #kindnessactivitiesforkids #kindness #kindkids #summer #summerfun #summeractivitiesforkids #coffeeandcarpool
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Ice Paints – Fun Activity for Kids!

Ice Paints
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Frozen Ocean Sensory Fun For Kids Of All Ages

Ocean Sensory Tub | Preschool, Kindergarten and elementary aged kids will love this frozen ocean … #2
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No Sew Reading Tent for Kids

No sew reading tent for kids
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Painting On Ice Art Activity

painting on ice
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Nature Walk Game + Printable

Wanna make your nature walks a little more fun and interesting? This Nature Walk Game and printable is fun for kids, adults, grandparents - the whole family!
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DIY Water Wall For Summer STEM

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Have a Rock’n Game Night with an Outdoor DIY Tic-Tac-Toe Game

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Easy Ocean Slime Recipe For Kids

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Compliment Suns Friendship Craft

Use these compliment suns to help kids learn how to give classmates and friends compliments. It's the perfect kindness craft and friendship craft.
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FREE License Plate Game Printable for Kids

Taking the kids on a road trip? Don't forget to print this FREE License Plate Game Printable. Easy way to keep your little ones busy on long car rides, with simple checklist the whole family can get involved in + easy road trip snack ideas! #RoadTrip #FamilyTravel #FreePrintable
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How to Build Your Own DIY Foil Stream With Kids

DIY foil river
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DIY Felt Ice Cream Play Mat

DIY felt play mat
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How to Tie Dye with Turmeric

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How To Make Toilet Roll Pots

toilet roll pots
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DIY Tent Kit

DIY tent kit
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Fun Frog Sensory Bin For Toddlers

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3 Fun Water Balloon Activities for Kids (Age 3+)

3 fun water balloon activities for kids
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Frozen ABC Chocolate Chalk

Frozen chocolate ABC chalk is made from basic household ingredients & is a great messy play, sensory, science & painting experience for kids of all ages.
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Water Gun Squirt Painting – Outdoor Process Art Fun!

Squirt Gun Process Art Painting
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Investigating Sunflowers Fine Motor Activity

Investigating Sunflowers in Preschool Fine Motor Sensory Bin
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Painted Rocks Sharks

Shark painted rocks! How fun are these guys. Video tutorial for how to paint rocks into toothy sharks.
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11+ Free Printable Summer Do a Dot (boredom buster for toddlers & preschoolers)

Four free printable dab a dot worksheets on a wood background. Each worksheet has a summer themed image with round black and white circles to dot in with a bingo dauber marker. One image is a sand bucket with shovel, one is an ice cream cone, one is a flamingo, and one is a pair of sandals.
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Free Printable Summer Bingo (low-prep boredom-buster)

Two printable summer bingo cards on a wood background. Each bingo card printable features 24 cartoon summer images like a beach ball, flip flops, an umbrella, and ice cream.
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Exploding Sidewalk Chalk Experiment

bags filled with colorful exploding sidewalk chalk
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Homemade Spectroscope | Bring Light Refraction to Life!

Easy Wooden Tic Tac Toe Game

Wooden Tic Tac Toe Game - Completed Game
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Hairy – Spring gardening craft

Spring Gardening Craft for Kids
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How to Make a Simple DIY Popsicle Stick Bird Feeder

Popsicle Stick Bird Feeder (1)
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Fabulous Play Dough Mats (Free Printables)

Free Printable playdough mats - kids playing with play dough on a pizza play dough mat.
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How to make a fun Balloon Rocket to curb Summer Boredom

How to make a Balloon Rocket
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How to Create Recycled Container Herb Garden With Your Kids

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Monday 5th of June 2023

I’ve been talking with my pediatrician about what to do with my kindergartener in the summer and he actually suggested the fly swatter bubbles! I’ve never seen that idea before but I’m excited to try it. She also loves to paint and wants to help with the garden so those rocks are going to be such a fun summer activity. Thank you so much for sharing!!