Summer is all about being outside, enjoying the weather and nature, so remove those digital devices and encourage the kids to get outdoors with these simple boredom busters.
This is great for two or more players, but keep away from the house or car just in case the ball makes its way to a window – although if the worst happens this is where AA Insurance home insurance and excess-free glass cover really pays off! Other backyard games that don’t require a great deal of space include croquet, badminton, frisbee, and softball, and can involve the whole family.
There’s nothing better than swinging from an old tire under the dappled shade of a tree. Motorbike tires are narrower and lighter than car ones, so might be more suitable especially if you don’t have a particularly large tree to hang it from. Give it a make-over by painting it before it’s hung up, to compliment the colour of your house, or outdoor furniture.
Wet and wild
A water slide in the backyard can provide hours of slip-sliding fun when the sun really beats down. Or it can be as simple as hooking up the garden sprinkler so the kids can leap about the garden, while you get to water the lawn at the same time. If water is restricted, then send the little ones out with a bucket of water and a brush to ‘paint’ exterior surfaces like a concrete or tile path, the fence, or even the car!
How does your garden grow?
Teach your kids about where their food comes from while also having fun. Veges like radishes and bean sprouts grow quickly so your children won’t need to exercise too much patience. For the floral variety it’s hard to beat a sunflower, especially when they can grow much taller than most children, as well as some adults. If you need a head start then seedlings are ideal, and can be potted up in no time.
Encourage the kids to dress up like pirates, and draw them a treasure map with plenty of interactive clues, like 12 big steps out the backdoor and two side steps to the right. If you’re brimming with creativity then make it into a rhyme. Bury or hide a box of ‘treasure’ in the garden, with activity books, colouring pencils and some gold chocolate coins to extend the fun into the afternoon. To keep the momentum of the hunt going, little treasures could also be found along the way to keep smaller children interested.
Pack a fun lunch of finger food, a blanket, a game or two, and sun umbrella before heading off for a day at the beach, park, river, or even your own backyard. A picnic is a relaxing way to enjoy the great outdoors as well as time with the family. If you’re going to make it an all day event then consider something more substantial to eat by taking the BBQ or finding a public one to use instead.
Remember when you and the family are spending time outdoors to regularly apply sunscreen, put on a hat, sunglasses and a shirt and spend some time in the shade.
You can find out more about sun safety on the SunSmart website.