Tips and Advice

Summer Staycation Ideas, Part 3

Strapped for cash this summer? With a little imagination and a lot of time, there's no end to what you can do with your kids during a staycation.
boy reading book
By Susan Barnes
Updated on: November 11th, 2022

boy reading book We’re back with another list of summer staycation ideas. These ideas, as all in our previous features on staycations, can be used as weekend activities for the kids as well. There are a variety of ways to provide fun and entertainment for your children without spending the money you might not have.

Many of the supplies for these ideas you can find already in your home, from the kids’ bedrooms to the craft room to the kitchen. Other ideas involve short trips for little money, teaching big lessons in the process.

With a little imagination and a lot of time, there’s no end to what you can do with your kids this summer.

The Run Down

  • Did your child’s school send them home with a summer reading list? Turn that list into a book club and discuss the books with them after they’ve read them.
  • Use the inside and the outside of your house (if you have a yard) to have a scavenger hunt.
  • Grab some blank sheets of paper, a pack of crayons, and let your artists’ create something to share with the entire family.
  • Play the kids’ favorite CDs and have a dance party in your living room.
  • Take a trip to the dollar store for a lesson in money and budgeting (as well as some cheap items for them to buy and play with later).

Here are ten more ideas for what to do this summer at home with the kids.

  1. Your Name Here’s Book Club. Create a summer reading list for your kids, then discuss the books after they read them. Invite their friends to participate, too.
  2. Scavenger Hunt. There is nothing more easy or straightforward than a scavenger hunt. Pick items to hide in your house or yard, then give the kids a list of what’s been hidden and see who can find them the fastest.
  3. Make the Next Great Superhero. With blank sheets of paper and crayons or clothes-safe, non-toxic markers, you and your children can make comic books to share with the family.
  4. Easy Bake. Pancake batter lends itself to more than just pancakes. Kids can use it to make cookies, a cake, whatever can go into the oven or into a pan. Just make sure that an adult handles the oven and the burners.
  5. Off to the Races! Make a simple obstacle course in the backyard with items that little feet can easily jump or climb over and let the kids have a race.
  6. Dance Party. Have a Kinect or a Wii? Even if you don’t, you can still have a dance party. Play your kids’ favorite tunes and let them rock out. It’s great exercise for them and for you.
  7. Play in the Rain. Yes, you read that correctly. Depending on where you live, rain might come like clockwork every afternoon. Why not take advantage and let the kids have a chance to do something they usually aren’t allowed to?
  8. Hide and Seek. Another stand-by like the scavenger hunt, hide and seek costs no money and can be played indoors or outdoors.
  9. Dollar Store Field Trip. Not only is this a low-cost destination, it’s also a great opportunity to teach your kids about money and budgeting. Give them a small amount good for a couple of items and show them how to shop and make decisions with the money they have.
  10. Go Star-Gazing. There are a number of options available when it comes to looking at the stars. From checking out a book at the library, to visiting your local planetarium, to downloading a mobile app to help you identify constellations, the night sky is there for your entertainment. Your neighborhood observatory or planetarium may even offer free or discounted shows.