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By Rachel Hoeing

How many of you have already heard “I’m bored” come out of your child’s mouth since school let out? Although it’s irritating to hear, I think one of the best learning lessons is to allow your children to be bored. Boredom sparks creativity and ingenuity. But you all know as well as I do that the spark can die out quickly. Some kids just need a jump start to get the fun activities rolling.

That is where today’s blog comes in. I asked moms and dads what their favorite summer memories were when they were younger. I asked for things that they did in or around the house. I have compiled the list below for you to keep on hand, print out, bookmark, whatever. The first time your children say, “I’m bored” or “I don’t know what to do” you can give a suggestion off this list. Hopefully, they will find something that sounds appealing, and if not, lucky for you – we’ve got our Summer Bucket List which includes plenty of activities and explorations that you can enjoy AWAY from home!

99 Ways to Reply to “I’m Bored”

  1. Play in the sprinkler
  2. Make a slip-n-slide
  3. Make kool-aid popsicles using fun popsicle molds.
  4. Find a jar, poke some holes in the lid, and catch lightening bugs
  5. Make the front porch a stage, play music and lip-sync
  6. Play with Legos
  7. Make a reading nook in your room and dive into a new book
  8. Host a lemonade stand
  9. Learn how to do a cartwheel, round-off, or handstand
  10. Play cards – war, spiked malice, spit, uno, slap-jack, spoons
  11. Make cookies
  12. Draw a picture of what your dream house would look like, adding details in every room
  13. Create a dance routine
  14. Set up an indoor tent to watch a movie
  15. Build a fort in the woods
  16. Play with Barbies
  17. Play four square
  18. Plant a garden or flowers
  19. Dress up your pet (gently!)
  20. Plan a dinner for your parents and create a restaurant atmosphere to serve them
  21. Play school
  22. Play in the creek
  23. Climb a tree
  24. Catch creepy-crawlies in a box with holes
  25. Play Ghost In the Graveyard
  26. Build a fairy garden in the yard
  27. Make a volcano
  28. Start a game of kickball
  29. Design plans for a treehouse (maybe one day it will really be built!)
  30. Eat watermelon on the porch and see how far you can spit the seeds
  31. Break rocks apart to see what they look like inside
  32. Play Cats in the Cradle with string
  33. Build a clubhouse, name your club, give all your friends secret names and passwords
  34. Make Mudpies in the dirt
  35. Fill up buckets of water and use paintbrushes to paint the sidewalk and driveway
  36. Draw with chalk, play hopscotch
  37. Eat lunch outside on a picnic blanket
  38. Camp in your backyard
  39. Use a shoebox to create a habitat for imaginary animals
  40. Create a Matchbox carwash (shaving cream to soap up the cars, big bowl to rinse them in water)
  41. Make crafts out of duct tape
  42. Hula Hoop
  43. Take the dog for a walk
  44. Play hand-clapping games – Miss Mary Mack, Say Say Old Playmate
  45. Collect flowers
  46. Ride your Bike, Skateboard, Scooter or Ripstick
  47. Make friendship bracelets
  48. Play Kick the Can
  49. Write a letter or make a card for a grandparent
  50. Set up a TV or a big sheet with a projector for an outdoor movie night
  51. Find Honeysuckle and enjoy!
  52. Play jump rope, double-dutch, sing songs while jumping
  53. Play dress up
  54. Make up a game show and record it
  55. Build ramps for your bikes or skateboard
  56. Play hide and seek or Sardines
  57. Clean out a messy space
  58. Build outdoor houses/shelters for dolls or army men and let them sleep there
  59. Paint a bookshelf outside to keep in your room or playroom
  60. Water Balloon Fight or Squirt-gun fight
  61. Play Charades
  62. Set up an obstacle course in the front yard
  63. Create with Play-doh, clay, Silly Putty, or Flubber
  64. Catch frogs
  65. Make your own flashcards for math problems or sight words
  66. Investigate your yard with a magnifying glass. Check out our Outdoor Scavenger Hunt Ideas
  67. Get out the water hose for hours of enjoyment
  68. Make your own bird feeder
  69. Wash the car
  70. Try to get around the entire inside of the house without ever touching the floor
  71. Play Wall Ball
  72. Collect all the toys you no longer play with and donate them
  73. Take a book under a tree and read
  74. Become a photographer
  75. Make your own ice cream
  76. Stretch out on your back in the yard and watch the clouds, at night watch the stars
  77. Go on a hunt to collect trash and clean up the environment
  78. Buy a bird book and try to identify the ones in your yard
  79. Make your own exercise video
  80. Go geocaching
  81. Play Frisbee
  82. Make your own beanbag toss with buckets
  83. Pretend your yard is a beach. Set out chairs, umbrellas, baby pools and sand
  84. Put on a magic show
  85. Do a craft
  86. Play tag – freeze tag, TV tag, zombie tag, flashlight tag
  87. Set up a scavenger hunt for your siblings or friends
  88. Play Mother May I, Red Light Green Light, Duck Duck Goose, or Red Rover
  89. Make up a story and act out a play
  90. Melt ice on the pavement
  91. Do a puzzle
  92. Blow bubbles
  93. Break out Monopoly or the Game of Life
  94. Play Capture the Flag
  95. Follow the Leader
  96. Design your own board game
  97. Play football, baseball, softball, soccer, lacrosse or basketball
  98. Make musical instruments with kitchen items and have a parade
  99. Pretend you are Charlie’s Angels or The Dukes of Hazard (of course you will want to step into the current century on this one and substitute your kids’ favorite shows!)

As you may have noticed, most of the moms and dads I surveyed were children of the 80’s!  You will note that our parents were much more lenient with dangerous activities. Guess we should add a disclaimer here that TMoM is not responsible for broken bones, skinned knees, black eyes, poison ivy or anything else traumatic that may happen while attempting one of our 99 suggestions! 🙂

Enjoy and please share more ideas by commenting below!

Other blogs and directories you may use this summer!

Summer Bucket List
Triad Area Strawberry Farms
Splash Pads & Water Slides
Summer Camps in the Triad
VBS in the Triad
Swim Clubs & Pools
Favorite Parks, Playgrounds & Walking Trails
Day Trips
What to do with your Preschooler this Summer
Event Calendar

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