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6 Fun and Educational Activities to Do With Your Child This Summer

Friday, June 24, 2016 -- Megan Sternke

Sometimes, it can be hard to help fill your child’s long summer days without having to reluctantly allow them an abundance of electronic screen time. If you find yourself needing inspiration to engage your child, this list might come in handy. These activities merge fun and learning by incorporating games, crafting, science, language arts, and much more. Your child will be having so much fun that he or she won’t even realize that he or she is doing something educational!

Electric Dough

This activity is a great way to introduce the concept of circuits to young children. Together, you create two different types of dough, one being salt-based and the other being sugar-based. With just a battery pack and LED light, your child will be able to test the conducting and insulating properties of each type of dough. Watch for looks of amazement as the bulb lights after being plugged into the dough! We’re all surrounded by the benefits of electricity every day, so take the time to teach your child a little bit about how it works!

Click here for full instructions and a video tutorial of the Electric Play Dough project!

3D Handprint

This activity is simple and quick, yet so mesmerizing that you might find your child spending hours drawing and experimenting with its creation. It is an optical illusion that is great for practicing manual skills, using only a piece of paper and markers. As a parent, you will have just as much fun with this craft as your child does!

Click here for full instructions and examples of the 3D Handprint craft!

Alphabet Museum

This game is a fun way to familiarize your child with letter recognition and reading readiness. The setup requires building the museum display, which simply involves collecting boxes and lining them with a colorful letter printout for each letter of the alphabet. Once this is complete, you can play different games with your child that will have them finding objects to fill the corresponding letter’s box. It’s an easy, hands-on way to boost early literacy skills and have some fun!

Click here for full set up instructions and three game ideas for the Alphabet Museum!

A Key to Your Trees

Now that summer is here and the trees are full of green leaves, it’s a great time to introduce your child to nature in your own backyard! This craft is a clever way to teach basic botany, observation, and mapping skills. Together, you can collect leaves from the trees and plants around your home, create crayon rubbings of each one, and then attach them to a “map” of your yard. Voilà! Your child has now made a key to the surrounding trees . This is a perfect activity for children who love to be outside!

For more detailed instructions to completing the A Key to Your Trees activity, click here!

Calculator Hopscotch

It’s been proven that exercise is good for your health and brain, so why not get your child moving and learning at the same time? This version of the old favorite sidewalk game will help your child practice basic arithmetic skills. All you have to do is chalk up a big calculator square, with each button measuring about one square foot. Then, Calculator Hopscotch will have your child hopping between numbers and equations with ease, improving his or her skills in no time.

Click here for different game ideas for Calculator Hopscotch and setup instructions!

Make It Rain!

Teach your child the science behind rain and clouds by letting him or her create his or her own stormy weather! This science experiment only requires shaving cream, water, and food coloring to create the sky replica. Hopefully, this activity will spark an interest in science in your child with its blend of lab techniques and earth science!

Full instructions and an explanation behind the science of the Make It Rain experiment are found here!

Interested in providing your child with some more structured opportunities for learning and skills practice this summer? Check out Study Island for Home!