With the beginning of summer vacation approaching, maybe you are looking for last-minute projects to keep your students entertained or your own children happy at home, with a new spin on fun. What are some items that might be entertaining for the entire family? The only hi-tech requirement (with one exception) for most of the following ideas, might be to download a recipe, but other than that, you can have a lot of low-tech fun at a low to moderate price point, and get the season started right. You can even make an investment in a novelty item that will make summer thrilling for the whole neighborhood. Check out some of these old and new ideas.
Giant Bubbles For The Outdoors
With a little dish soap, baking powder (not baking soda), water and a wand, you can experiment with making some incredible bubbles outdoors, even in hot weather. Check out Sam L. Richard’s obsession with big bubbles and learn about his recipe for success here. Judging by the comments in his post a lot of people have created some record-setting bubbles following it. Bubbles work well on cool and cloudy days, as well as steamy hot days, when you can amaze the crowd by showing them how large those bubbles can get. The best part is after they pop, there is little to disassemble and put away. Just put them away and bring them back out next time, no heavy lifting required.
Maybe you already know how to knit one, purl two, but you probably assume it was just a winter craft? Consider playing around with this old pastime activity, while having more fun and spending less time knitting by using oversized novelty yarn. Create a throw for the couch, a rug or something to keep you warm while you watch fireworks or outdoor movies at the park, in no time flat. You may just need an extra set of hands to manage the yarn to start it off right. Check out how impossibly chunky it gets in this Pulptastic article.
DIY Fire Pit
Have a cozy campfire right in your own backyard with a Do It Yourself (DIY) fire pit, using these assembly tips from Lowe’s. Of course, first check with your town ordinances to see if they are permitted at your residence. Whether you live in a drought zone like California or not, exercise extreme caution and respect when using your fire pit. After all you want your neighbors and wildlife to come around to enjoy it, and not be afraid of the next big forest fire. Back yard fire pits create an ambiance that can be relaxing for families or even offer some romance if you dine al fresco. For more on creating a DIY Fire Pit and tips for staying safe, check out this article.
Dice Games Without the Gambling, AKA Just Playing Around With Numbers
Get a set of Tenzi dice like the ones here at I Love Tenzi and stop, drop and roll, literally, with others at the kitchen table. Dice require the least assembly, are low on tech, but high on the suspense and fun. The winner takes the prize when all of their dice are the same number. Want to make the game harder? Roll two sets at once. Keep the dice for other fun games like Bunco and follow the official rules from the World Bunco Association. Make sure you have scorecards (you can decorate in fun themes) and a hand bell handy in order to make the game even more fun and interactive. This will have your group looking forward to the next meet up.
Typewriter To Go – To Practice Your Old School Writing Skills
You may be ridiculed for using them, but old-fashioned typewriters have found their way back into the limelight amongst certain millennial’s, as noted in this Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel article. It talks about how this retro item, which preceded computers, is not back in style and keeping repair shops busy again. Some typewriter aficionado’s, especially Hipsters, even attempt to bring them into book stores, libraries, cafe’s, and other public places as noted in this article. Remember to mind your neighbors on that one, for they might just be reading your newest novel one day in the coffee shop where you encountered each other. You want to leave a good first impression!
Your Very Own Drone
Practice aerial photography or enjoy recreational play with a drone! Follow these buying guides on Amazon.com. Whether they are for a new spy tactic, or used for fun and amazing aerial photography, make sure you follow all known regulations for safety, appropriate use and fly them only in permitted airspace. Keep in mind regulations are still under debate, according to this Reuters article. For now, consider the possibilities of capturing epic shots everyone will talk about and explore new places and new areas with your high-flying device.
What are some of the activities you are looking forward to this summer? Are they free, budget friendly, or an investment for the whole family or neighborhood? Are your students taking up any new hobbies carrying around novelty items, or are they (their parents) making an investment in new technology this summer? Tell us at TeacherCents by commenting below.
Melissa Heule, Freelance Writer