Skip To Content

    27 Creative And Inexpensive Ways To Keep Kids Busy This Summer

    School's out, the sun is high, and it should be a crime for any kid to plop down in front of the TV for the next three months.

    1. Bananagrams is great, but GIANT BANANAGRAMS is best.

    Just cut out the letters together and prepare for some major scrambling.

    2. Take Twister outside.

    Here's how to do it yourselves.

    3. And bring Scrabble to the pool.

    The sponges will float! WITCHCRAFT/physics.

    4. Turn a two-liter bottle into a DIY sprinkler.

    5. Make art with things you guys find in nature.

    6. Show your appreciation for those starry summer nights.

    Get the directions here.

    7. Feed the birds.

    Here is how to make your own feeder in whatever shapes you can think of (or find cookie cutters for).

    8. If you have a seasoned friendship-bracelet-maker, take it to the next level with these DIY flip-flops.

    Directions here.

    9. Make dinosaur tracks with flip-flops.

    Get the directions here.

    10. Make ice cream cone seed planters together.

    It's biodegradable and is the perfect way to start a small garden. Make sure none of your precious offspring attempt to eat it, however.

    11. Or plant markers for a big garden.

    Like these clever little signs.


    Or these Mod Podge'd spoons.

    13. Create your own magnetic games for long trips.

    It's just like an iPad, except that it costs one dollar and you won't feel so guilty parking your kid in front of it for six hours.

    14. Work on a long-term project together, like making (temporary) art with their toys.

    This car mural is fully magnetic, so maximum Hot Wheels-ing is still possible (and encouraged).

    15. Construct the most boss fort of all time.

    16. Or the most rockin' teepee.

    17. For smaller projects, recycle things you already have into new buddies.

    18. Race soap boats on hot days.

    19. Or turn pool noodles into race tracks.

    20. Pool noodles also make wicked fun wickets.

    If you want your kids to learn croquet. If not, they can always just wantonly kick things around.

    21. And obstacle courses.

    Directions here.

    22. And bike-washes.

    This looks like the most fun activity ever.

    23. Have fun with food.

    Here is how to paint toast (edibly/non-toxically).


    Create frozen yogurt shapes using flexible molds or ice cube trays. They'll be just as fun to make as they will be to eat.


    Have them assemble their own fruit kebabs and eat them for a healthy summer snack.

    26. Make an outdoor tic-tac-toe board.

    Somehow things get way more competitive when you make them larger and take them outside.

    27. For a more harrowing game, stage a toy rescue mission.

    They can only be released with well-aimed water guns.

    Check out how to make some of these projects on "Live from the Couch!"

    Featuring Steve Schirripa of Sopranos fame, who informed me that I was like a "young, hip Martha Stewart" and so now I can die happy.