Summer is here, the kids are at home and the excitement is in the air! You have to keep the toddler occupied, somehow. Here are 20 fun activities you can do with your kid this summer. Plus, download the free printable Summer Bucket List for even MORE ideas!
1. Build a bonfire
Go to the backyard, make a small campsite and build a campfire. Let your kid enjoy the sensation of camping. You can even build a pretend bonfire in a homemade campsite playset.
2. Catch Bugs
Buy some nets and run in the bushes around the house trying to catch some bugs. It may look silly to the neighbors but it is great fun for the toddler, and that is all that matters.
While you are out in the backyard, lie down, looking up and stargaze. Try explaining to your kid the different kinds of stars you can see. You can even get a cheap telescope to really see what’s going on in the sky!
4. Fly kites
Build or buy some kites and fly them at a local park or beach.
5. Dance in the rain
Ensure that you do not stay out long in the rain, lest the kid develops complications, but allow them to feel the drops and dance a bit.
6. Commission a treasure hunt
Hide some ‘treasure’ in your backyard and embark on a treasure hunt with your kid. Allow them to be the leader. Small crystals and fancy rocks make great treasure and can be a great learning exercise.
7. Make a water blob
Get some plastic bags and some tape. Fill the bags with water and tape them. Then allow your kid to dance on top of these bags. They will feel calm, relaxed and absolutely excited. PBS has a great tutorial on how to make your own.
8. Play in the dirt
Which kid doesn’t like playing in the mud? Allow them this pleasure by joining them and getting a little dirty yourself.
9. Play capture the flag
Hide a flag somewhere and create a set of obstacles the toddler has to overcome before they can capture the flag. This will be both challenging and exciting.
10. Spray chalk
Buy some spray chalk and allow the kid to paint the driveway or patio using their imagination. No worries, it will wane off soon enough.
11. Hammock swing
Create a hammock and let your kid swing on it whenever they like. You can also buy cute toddler hammocks online!
12. Play dress up
Use summer time as the opportunity to indulge your child’s fantasies. Dress them up according to what they like or their favorite cartoon characters or heroes. Have them sample a variety of clothing and let them enjoy the moment. Use whatever old clothes you have to create costumes or buy some online.
13. Let them play with water
Let the kids play with water. You can open a sprinkler or a hose pipe and take the game to another level.
14. Have a picnic
Pack some food, some water, snacks and a mat and head to the bush for a picnic. The nature will be refreshing to both of you.
15. Play soccer
Indulge your kids by playing soccer with them. Use pool noodles or toys to create goals and teach them how to score.
16. Create a backyard car wash
Bring your car out and let the kid get to work, washing and scrubbing in their own backyard car wash. You can pay them some money for the effort and let them learn the value of hard work. Or, create your own fun cardboard car wash!
17. Teach your kid to swim
Is there a better season to teach your kid how to swim than in summer?
18. Make music
Make some music with your child. You can record it and listen to how terrible you both sounded later.
19. Do magic tricks
It is time to amuse the kid by doing some magic tricks. Leave him in awe and admiration when you pull off those tricks. Teach him how to do them himself with a magician’s set.
20. Bowling alley in the backyard
Create a bowling alley by using empty bottles and a tennis ball. Teach them how to bowl the basic, fundamental way.
There are a million ways to entertain your toddler this summer. Be sure to leave a comment with any other ideas you have, and I’ll update the post accordingly!
Katie Reed is a passionate writer and mother of four vivacious boys from Salt Lake City, Utah. Drawing from her own journey through TTC, pregnancy, and the joys of raising children, she offers a wealth of insight into the world of motherhood. Beyond her heartfelt tales, Katie delights her readers with family-friendly recipes, engaging crafts, and a curated library of printables for both kids and adults. When she’s not penning her experiences, you’ll find her crafting memories with her husband and sons—Dexter, Daniel, Chester, and Wilder.