Woo hoo! We made it! Whether you and your kiddos homeschooled or went to a school this year, summer is finally here. And that means it’s time for some fun for everyone!

And there are all kinds of simple ways to have big fun this summer without traveling far from home. In fact, I’ve collected a long list of ideas to help your family kick of summer with some fun! So, read it for now and bookmark it for later. And keep track of everything you decide to try with my free Summer Fun Starter Pack!

Looking for some fun summer outdoor activities?

  • Park it! Take time to visit your favorite park, pool, or beach. Homeschoolers often do this during the school year (when it’s a lot less crowded) but summer is a great time to meet up with friends at your favorite outdoor play place. Cool off in the water, make some new wildlife discoveries, and enjoy exploring the outdoors together.
  • I Spy! Try one of these fun outside scavenger hunts, including a photo one. Or have your creative kids make up one of their own to play with family and friends.
  • The Duct Tape Boat Race! I’m a pretty big fan of Duct Tape, especially the fun ones like this gummy bears roll. And this duct tape boat idea from Whole Child Homeschool is the perfect way to combine creativity, buoyancy, and ingenuity, while having a blast with friends and family. Everyone can create their own boat from recycled items and Duct Tape. Then race or float them at a local creek, pool, or other body of water.
  • Get Wet! Grab some family and friends and cool down with a fun game of water balloon volleyball (one of our family’s all time favorite summer games). All you need is a net, two old sheets, and a cooler full of water balloons. Choose two teams and take turns tossing the water balloon over the net using teamwork and the sheet. Your team gets a point when it bursts on the other team’s side. Don’t have enough people for that? Grab some water guns and set some boundaries and rules for a water gun war.
  • Plant it! Plants are another of my favorite things, and summer is a great time to begin or add to a plant collection. Just grab some plants or seeds, good soil, and fun containers, and create a small garden with your child. A few easy growing plants include: basil, most succulents, grape tomatoes, and wildflower seeds. Don’t forget to water them regularly! You may be surprised at who has a green thumb and enjoys this outdoor activity.

Want some fun summer ways to keep learning?

  • Take the Plunge! Have your child brainstorm things that they would like to learn more about, and then help them find books, videos, and other resources to take a deep dive into learning about it. It could be a person, invention, moment in history, art style, or anything else that they are interested in.
  • Post It! Grab a stack of colorful Post It notes and some gel pens or markers, and have everyone brainstorm some questions. It can be anything that they don’t know or wonder about, from “Why is the sky blue?” to “How many sharks live in the ocean?” Find a spot on the fridge, a window, or a dry erase board, where everyone can post their questions. Then, encourage everyone to grab a question from time to time, and search for and share the answer. (This is a great boredom buster activity!)
  • Stop, drop, and read! Take some time for everyone, even mom, to stop, grab a book, and chill out on the sofa or pool deck for some reading and relaxation. You can have everyone keep track of all their summer reads with the simple book list in my Summer Fun Starter Pack. You can also join a local summer book club like this one from Barnes and Noble. Or start your own book club with this guide from Celebrate a Book for even more summer reading fun!
  • Learn a new language! Summer is a great time to branch out and begin to learn a new language. And Duolingo is the perfect app for everyone to use. You can choose one new language to practice as a family, or let each person choose their own.
  • Science Experiment Extravaganza! One of the best parts of science is all of the cool experiments. And summer is the perfect time to grab some goggles and test all kinds of scientific theories with some fun experiments. Steve Spangler has a whole library of simple experiments you can try at home with your family.

Looking for some indoor summer fun ideas?

  • Start a collection! Summer is the perfect time to encourage your kids to start a collection. It could be anything from stickers (like those Lisa Frank ones we used to collect) or even patches. My neighbor’s son has written to different law enforcement agencies to collect patches with their official seal and symbols. 
  • Giant Blanket Fort! Blanket forts are a fun way to practice all kinds of engineering skills, patience, and creativity. Especially if they are covering an entire room like this “Aren’t These Things for Five Year Olds” Moment from Cecily Ilana. And summer is the perfect time for kids of all ages to take the day to create and play in a giant blanket fort.
  • Pajama Movie Marathon! Our of our family’s absolutely favorite traditions is a 24 hour movie day each summer. We collect all of our favorite movies and add in a few new ones. Then we snuggle up in our pj’s with lots of snacks and food to laugh and enjoy our favorite movie moments together. You could also add in or switch this up with some favorite family board games, like these from My Little Poppies.
  • Hobbit Day! Hobbits are known for their love of food, and summer is the perfect time to celebrate like a hobbit with a day filled with cooking and eating lots of good food and snacks. You can read, watch, or listen to some of this classic story with your children, while making and eating some of these favorite hobbit foods.
  • Tour Memory Lane! Have some old family albums or boxes of pictures from the past? Take some time to sit and share memories from these photos with your children. You can even create some new albums using all your supplies or a digital service like Mixbooks.
  • Write a Pen Pal! A really fun way to encourage your kids to expand their writing and drawing skills is with a pen pal. Whether it’s a sponsored child (our family uses Prison Fellowship) or an out-of-state friend or relative, creating cards and letters to mail to them is a perfect indoor summer activity.

Want some hands-on summer fun ideas?

  • Sew it up! Sewing is one important life skill that can be lots of fun. Your child can learn to crochet, knit, or sew all kinds of cool creations. Summer is also a great time for some sewing lessons and practice on a sewing machine for even more hands-on fun.
  • Catapult Challenge! The catapult is a medieval creation that is still intriguing today. You can have your kiddos use a kit like this or household supplies to create a catapult or even multiple ones. Then, they can take it somewhere safe and measure how far different objects will fly through the air.
  • Make a robot! Keep a box of recycled objects and let your kids create their own robot or other creations. You can also invest in a build your own programmable robot like this unicorn or this robot to practice those coding skills.
  • Picasso Painting Party! Grab some painting supplies, paint shirts, and the family or some friends for a painting party. Everyone can work together on a larger mural or each work on their own painting. Your kids can copy the style of a favorite artist or create something completely new.
  • What I loved this year! Have your kiddos remember some favorite moments from their homeschool or school year, and draw or write them in a scrapbook page included in my Summer Fun Starter Pack.
  • Create a clay creation! Grab some modeling clay and tools and let your children create some tiny clay creations like these favorite animals or these food jewelry charms. It’s a perfect way to use those fine motor skills and create some cute gifts for family and friends.
  • Monthly Make It Day! Subscribe to a monthly kit or two over the summer and make some new crafts or STEM creations. KiwiCo is one of my favorite monthly kits (my niece’s as well) with all kinds of different subscriptions box options.

Looking for a few simple summer adventure ideas?

  • Treat Yo Self Day! Take a day for everyone (you too mama!) to treat themself to a new treat or favorite activity. You can take turns, or have everyone in the family treat themself on the same day. You could even start off the day with some Treat Yo Self cupcakes just like Tom and Donna! This would be a perfect treat for completing a row of other activities on the Summer Fun Bingo Sheet included in my starter pack.
  • Give and get a little! Take everyone to the dollar store and have each person pick out one surprise gift for everyone else in the group or family. Then let everyone wrap and give out their gifts to each person. This was a huge hit on the last “littles” cousin day in our family, with lots of laughs at all the fun gifts everyone gave and received.
  • Try something new! Summer is the perfect time to try out something new. It could be a new local restaurant or park. It could be a new book to read aloud. Maybe it’s a new food to prepare and cook. It could even be a new instrument or art style. If there has been something that you and your kiddos have been wanting to try, summer is a great time to step out into something new.

And there you have it! So many ways to add in fun to your family’s summer. You can use these ideas to help your children set some fun summer goals. And they can keep track of everything they try with the Summer Fun Bingo Sheet.

It’s all included in my free Summer Fun Starter Pack you can grab by signing up below for my weekly email updates. And then we can stay connected, and I can share even more fun ideas to help you and your family. See how this works? 

I hope you and your family have some big fun this summer! Comment below and let me know your family’s favorite ideas for summer fun!