I love summer. No schedule. No school. It’s blissful. Well, except for that “you’ve had enough screen time” part. Then it gets ugly. Because she’s 13 and she’s bored. If you’re like me, you just want some ideas you can rattle off of some screen time alternatives. So I set out to make a list of 10 Awesome Teen and Tween Summer Activities. I hope it helps to preserve your sanity.
Have you ever heard of geocaching? Letterboxing is similar, only it’s more like a scavenger hunt. Basically, people hide boxes in public locations and then post clues to the box’s whereabouts on this site https://www.letterboxing.org. When you go to the site, click on “letterboxes” and then you can search by region, state, city, etc. You can even filter results based on how far you want to hike to find the box! You will need to take a log book and stamp pad with you and you’ll want to get your own personalized stamp as well. Once you find the box, it will contain a stamp and log book. Just stamp the letterbox stamp in your logbook, and leave your personalized stamp in theirs. There are over 90,000 letterboxes hidden in North America, so no matter where you live, you’ll be sure to find some!
2. Plan and Prepare a Meal
Our daughter loves to cook! Last year she even got her cooking badge for her American Heritage Girls’ troop. One of the things that she had to do was plan, shop for, and prepare a 3 course meal for family and friends. She loved it! But even if your daughter has never cooked before, she can still plan and shop for the meal, and then prepare it with your help. She will be learning a useful skill and will be very proud of herself!
3. Start a Scrapbook
If your daughter is anything like ours, she will have 1,000 pictures on her phone taking up valuable memory space. You can free up some memory by printing those pics and getting them into a scrapbook. One inexpensive way to print pictures is through Snapfish’s monthly subscription. You get 100 photos per month for the cost of shipping, which is around $9. This works out to less than 10 cents per pic … a bargain! You can find info about it here.
4. Make an Old Fashioned Pinterest Board (aka collage)
Back in the day, waaaay before Pinterest, we used to make collages of places we wanted to go, things we wanted to do, words that had meaning to us. All you need is posterboard, some old magazines, a pair of scissors, and a glue stick. She may balk at first, but will end up loving the finished project!
5. Tie-dye Stuff
People typically think “t-shirt” when they think about tie-dying, but there are SO many things you can tie-dye! Towels, socks, aprons, pillowcases, just to name a few! And you don’t have to buy expensive dyes either, just use this recipe made out of kool-aid! Not only will they look cute, but they’ll smell good too!
6. Go on a Neighborhood Scavenger Hunt
Tell her that for THIS activity she gets to use her phone! Give her a list of things to find or do in the neighborhood, ex: a red flower, a dog in a yard, pose in front of a grey house, etc. Tell her she must take pictures of each thing, and that she’ll get 5 points for each one she gets. Then let her turn in the points to use the next time the ice cream truck comes through the neighborhood! If you want a list of ideas, comment below and I will send you some!
7. Make Homemade Popsicles
8. Make Homemade Soap
I have a friend who makes the most GORGEOUS, yummy smelling gourmet soap ever! (Can you say “spearmint avocado”? It’s heavenly!) And while her processes may be a little more involved then a teenager may have the patience for, there are easy recipes that don’t take a lot of time or supplies, such as the one found here. (And by the way, if you’re in the market for gourmet soaps or lotion bars, you can check out my friend’s store here.)
9. Create Melted Crayon Art
A canvas, old crayons, a hairdryer, a glue gun and a little imagination will create some fantastic masterpieces! Simply glue the crayons onto the canvas, then turn the hairdryer on hot and point it toward the crayons. Tips: point the dryer downward, so the wax drips, and you may need to actually heat the canvas from the BACK so the wax doesn’t splatter!
10. Make a Time Capsule
This is a lot of fun! She can make a capsule to bury, but if you’re planning to move anytime soon, an above ground one may be a better choice! If she does want to bury one, a metal coffee can would be a good container. Items that can go into it could be: pictures of current fashions, newspapers with current events, a popular small toy, an example of today’s technology (a CD, DVD, etc), currency, or any of her favorite things. A letter to her future self would be fun too!
So there you go, friends, 10 awesome teen and tween summer activities! Comment below with things you have done or plan to do so we can get some more inspiration! Have a magical summer!