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Summer Fun for Kids
Crafts & Activities
Songs, Finger Plays &
Also see Science
Theme for some great science experiments for the kids!
Crafts & Activities
have a chain link or picket fence give the kids strips of crepe paper,
long strips of fabric or plastic and let them "weave" it through the spaces
in the fence.
in the Sun
You will need:
one piece of dark blue construction
paper for each child
a collection of objects from
around the daycare or home that have at least one flat side. For
example: keys, blocks, scissors, combs, jar lids (at least 5 items per
Take all your materials outside
to a flat space that receives direct sunlight and where you will be able
to leave your experiment set up for a few hours.
Give a piece of construction
paper to each child. Let each child chose five objects, and have
them arrange them on the paper with the flat side down. Leave these
in the direct sun for several hours, until the sun has bleached the exposed
areas of the paper. Then let the children take their objects off
the paper, noting the patterns produced by the sun.
your own Sand Garden
Make your own Sand Garden. Decorate it
with unusual stones, or press objects into the sand for interesting
What you will need:
large baking pan
Fill the pan almost to the top with sand.
Add enough water to dampen the sand. Cut out rectangular pieces of
cardboard. Cut an interesting design on the edge of each piece of
cardboard - very the designs using wavy, zig zag, or straight cuts.
Move the cardboard "comb" over the top of the sand to make patterns.
You can also draw lines and circles into the sand with twigs, plastic
spoons or craft sticks. Also use plastic containers, cookie cutters,
or other objects to press into the sand.
Bag Guessing Game
As well as a fun game
for the kids..this game develops sensory awareness, memory and listening
Collect summer props such
as sunglasses, swimming masks, swim fins, pail and shovel, bathing cap,
hat and visor, sunscreen lotion, etc. Identify the items with the
children and discuss their uses.
Reach and Feel:
Place five or six articles
in a beach bag, ask one child to come up close, close her eyes, reach into
the bag, grab an item, and guess what it is (without lifting the object
out of the bag). After child hs guessed remove the item to confirm the
Put some of the items
in the bag. How many of the items can the children recall?
Take out each item as the children name it. For any items the children
cannot recall, give them a clue and see if they can guess correctly.
Mix sand with dry tempera
paint by shaking thw two together in bags. Vary the colors by adding more
or less of the dry tempera paint. Pour the colored sand into small containers
or jars (baby food jars work great!) with holes punched in the lids, one
color per jar. Have the children draw squiggly lines, designs,ect. with
glue on construction peper or inside the lids of shoe boxes. Encourage
the children to be creative with the different colors of sand. Let the
sand paintings dry. Shake off the excess sand, and there you have an original
summer sand painting!
n Ends Wind Chime
You can use a hoop or
a stick to suspend any old things that ping, clink or clack! Use
monofilament fishing line to suspend the items. Don't make the lines too
long or they will tangle easily. Juice can lids that come off smoothly
can have holes punched in them with nails, and strung up. Nails, washers,
shells, copper pipes of various lengths can be used. If you find a pretty
feather or leaf in the yard or while out for a walk, tie it on and watch
1 cup play sand
1/2 cup cornstarch
3/4 cup hot water
Sand mold (choose mold
with nautical theme)
Mix all ingredients into
a pan. Cook slowly, stirring constantly until very thick. Cool mixture.
Form objects using cooking cutters with nautical shapes or sand molds.
Let dry in the sun and overnight (12 hours approximately). You might even
think of having children paint them when they are dry.
in the Bucket
Outdoor fun! Fill
a bucket with water. Give each child a ball and let them practice
throwing it into a bucket. Take turns and stand back! The splashes
will reward the children's accurate throws.
Stand outside on a sunny
day and let the children make a shadow! Ask questions such as:
"Can we make our shadows bigger? Can we make them smaller? Can we
make our shadows run? Can we make our shadows hop? Let's see if we can
catch our shadows!"
This activity is incredibly
easy to do and the result is a toy that your child will be able to play
with for hours. Cut the bottom out two clean plastic milk jug (one
for a friend). The milk jug makes a perfect funnel. Simply
toss the ball to the child and let her catch it in the funnel. Or
have your child toss the ball back and forth with a friend! Using
the funnel like a baseball mitt, you can make up all sorts of games.
You will need a styrofoam
drinking cup, a straw, a square of old towel, an elastic band, and bubble
solution. Dampen the towel with bubble solution and wring it out. Attach
it over the top of the cup, and secure it with the elastic. Make sure that
the top is completely covered. Punch a hole into the side of the cup -
just large enough for the straw to fit in tightly - making sure there is
no air space around the straw. Dip the towel top into a shallow pan of
bubble mix and scrape off the excess. Blow into the straw and a long stream
of bubbles will come out. Put the children's name on the cup and use them
over and over again
construction paper shapes
stamps or paint
Cut a visor shape out
of the paper plate for each child. Let them decorate their visor.
Staple a coated elastic at each corner of the visor after it is decorated.
Oh so cool!
If you have a solid fence
(or side of garage or house) - staple the largest sheet of paper you can
find (at least the child's height) and give a variety of art materials
to work with. This a great idea for anyone who wants to avoid indoor
painting due to the mess.
Or just give them a bucket
of water and a big fat paintbrush! Let them paint the house, the
fence, or whatever their little heart desires!!
does the Garden Grow?
Many fruit seeds and
vegetable cuttings will sprout easily indoors.
whole ear of corn, potato "eyes" (any kind of potato), carrot tops, peas,
beans, seeds from various fruit - peach, plum,
Place fruit seeds or vegie
cuttings in a shallow pan lined with paper towels and enough water to just
cover the seed or vegetable cuttings. Place pan in a warm, bright
area and watch and record the changes over the next few days/weeks.
In egg cartons with planting
soil - grass seed, mustard seed, watercress or herbs. They are fast
growing and fun to sample when grown!!
Pineapple - cut
off the top and trim three rows of bottom leaves. Allow to dry for three
days. Plant one inch deep in soil, keep moist and in a sunny location.
Onion - find an onion
that is already sprouted. Plant in soil - keep moins and in
a sunny location.
Plant grass seed or herbs
in styrofoam cups. Have the kids draw faces on the front of the cups....as
the seeds grow - their cup will grow hair!! They can experiment with
childproof scissors and give their cup a hair cut!!
celery stalk, jar or
glass, water, food coloring
Cut a few slits in the
bottom of the celery stalk. Fill the jar or glass about 1/2
full of water and add food coloring (darker colors work best - red, blue).
Place the celery stalk in the colored water and watch for changes.
Record the changes daily. Try using a celery stalk with leaves
or white carnations!!
A wonderful visual experience
of color changes. Make red, yellow and blue ice cubes using food coloring
and water. Place one red and yellow; one red and blue; and one yellow and
blue, and one of each color in separate ziploc bags. Place them in
the science area and as the colored ice cubes melt they will create new
colors. The kids will be busy going back and forth to check on what is
happening! Put colorful tags on each bag for the kids to identify
what colors were originally placed in the bags - and talk about what color
Rainy Day Picnic
Can't go outside? Then bring the indoors
in! Have a picnic in the living room, with beach blankets, sunglasses,
drink juice from funny straws - don't forget the ants (plastic ones, of
course!). Play some beach party music (Beach Boys) and dance the
Songs, Fingerplays & Nursery
Row, Row Your Boat
Row, row, row your boat
Gently down the stream.
Merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dream!
Raffi's Singable Songs for The Very Young
Oh Mister Sun, Sun, Mister
Please shine down on
Oh Mister Sun, Sun, Mister
Hiding behind a tree.
These little children
are asking you.
To please come out so
we can play with you.
Oh Mister Sun, Sun, Mister
Please shine down on
Great on a rainy day.
The word "sun" can also be replaced with "moon" to sing a song to Mr. Moon!
Mash 1/2 cup of peanut butter and 1 large or
2 small very ripe bananas with a fork. Add 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon and
mash again. Spread on one graham cracker square and top with the other
for a fun treat. You can also use this as a dip with teddy bear shaped
Chocolate Graham Crackers
Chocolate Sprinkles - Ants
Raisins - Beetles
Crush the graham crackers with a rolling pin.
Place into a bowl then add the ants, beetles and worms to the "dirt". Place
the bowl in the middle of the table with a clean sand shovel and
let each child scoop up a cup of dirt and bugs. You can let them eat with
their hands or spoons.
This is also great for outside at the picnic
table, using small paper cups or plastic bags for their treats. The real
backyard critters will help clean up the mess on the grass!
1 Hot dog weiner
1 Hot dog bun
Take hot dog weiner and make horizontal slits
(that go a little more than halfway through the hot dog) down half the
length of the hot dog. For the other half of the hot dog do the same thing
but make the slits on the opposite side. When boiled (or microwave) the
hot dog will twist like a snake. Serve on a hot dog bun with chili or cheese
1 can tuna, drained
1 small can crushed pineapple
1/2 cup raisins
3 small chopped sweet pickles
1 stick celery, chopped
3 Tbsp. mayonnaise
Mix all ingredients and spread on raisin bread
or white bread.
Apple Pops - Makes 9
1/2 (12 oz) can (3/4 cup) frozen grape juice
23 oz Jar MOTTS Chunky Apple Sauce
9 (3 oz) cold drink cups
9 wooden popsicle sticks
In medium bowl, combine juice concentrate and
apple sauce; blend well. Fill each cup with about 1/3 cup juice mixture.
Place cups in freezer until partially frozen, about 1 hour. Insert sticks;
freeze until firm, about 2 hours. To serve, remove drink cups by dipping
cup into warm water for a few seconds.
cooked ham or chicken
cheddar cheese chunks
Cut ham, cheese and pineapple into bite-size
chunks. Put one piece of each on a pretzel.
Plastic drinking straws
Serrated plastic knives
Knife for adult use only (for cutting watermelon)
An adult cuts the chilled watermelon into one-inch
chunks. Adult (with help from children) carefully removes seeds. Children
can help cut with plastic knives. Place seedless chunks of chilled watermelon
into zip-lock bags. Close all but one small corner of the bag. Insert the
plastic straw into the open corner and push it down to the bottom of the
bag. Children can now squish the watermelon chunks and sip the juice through
*Beary* special thanks to
for the wonderful graphics for this
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