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Easy, Inexpensive Outdoor Activities for Kids

Summer is a great time for kids and families to get outside and play. With the warm weather and long days, there are many activities you can plan to make sure kids have a fun time, without spending too much money. At the Imagine Institute, we wanted to share just a few outdoor activities you can plan for.

Backyard Obstacle Course – These can be easy to set up, without spending a lot of money. You can set up an obstacle course with hula-hoops for kids to jump through, and hopscotch boxes made from chalk on the sidewalk. You can also use jump ropes or even hoses to set up boundaries for your obstacle course. If you don’t have hula-hoops, you can also use foam noodles as a jumping pad. The sky is the limit on this, and it’s a great way to get kids outside and playing. ( )

Make a Sponge Necklace – This is something kids can wear just because, or you can soak it in water on hot days to help them stay cool. First, get a bunch of cheap, different colored sponges and cut them into various shapes like squares or triangles. Next, have the kids pick out the shapes they want for their necklaces. Then you can use a needle point and yarn to string the different shapes into a necklace that they can wear. Its an easy activity, and its light so kids can wear it during the summer. ( )

Make Your Own Bubbles – Buying a bottle of bubbles can get expensive if all the kids want their own, so why not make your own bubble mix. It’s easy. Simply mix 3 cups of water with one cup of dish soap and 6 tables spoons of light corn syrup. This will make the bubble form faster and look identical to any store-bought bottle. Then you can put the mix into any type of plastic container you want. You can even create your own bubble wands or use the left-over ones from bubble mixes you have had in the past. ( )

Create a Milk Carton Boat – Instead of throwing away that used milk or juice carton, turn it into a boat! Simply wash out the carton and make sure its dry, then cut a hole into one of the sides of it. You can have kids decorate it with paint, stickers, or whatever they think would look cool. You can even add a sail to it by gluing or taping a drinking straw to the bottom of the hole in the carton and add a piece of construction paper to it to look like a sail. Of course, make sure to test it out in the sink before you put it out on the pond or lake! ( )