Summer Crafts and Activities for the Kids

Carrie Lowrance

Crosswalk Contributor
Updated Jul 04, 2024
Summer Crafts and Activities for the Kids

There are lots of ways to make sure your kids have plenty to do this summer. Look through this list, choose a few crafts and activities, and start planning the best summer ever.

School is out, and summer is in full swing. No matter how busy you try to keep your kids, at some point, you are bound to hear, “I’m bored!” What’s a parent to do? 

No worries, here are some ideas for crafts and activities that you and your kids can do to bust that burst of boredom:



Ocean Jello- Make berry blue jello and add Swedish fish to it before chilling. Once set, add crushed vanilla wafers for sand and beach-themed cake decorations. 

Edible Slime- Look up a recipe for homemade edible slime. (Remind your kids that its primary purpose is for playing, not snacking.) 

Homemade Popsicles- Research recipes for homemade popsicles and make a tasty treat for the freezer.

Edible Playdough- Look up recipes for edible Playdough, and once again, remind the kids that it’s for playing, not eating.

Campfire- Put some icing on a plate and add stick pretzels, then attach a red gummy candy via icing for the flame.

Homemade Ice Cream- Find recipes for churnable and non-churnable ice cream.


Coffee Filter Butterflies- Let the kids color a coffee filter with markers, then spray it lightly with water to make the colors bleed. Once dry, twist it in the middle and clip a clothespin in the middle. Add pipe cleaners for antennas and eyes and a smile with a marker.

Puff Paint Ice Cream Cones- Print off a template of an ice cream cone, make some puff paint, and let the kids design their own ice cream cone.

Kool-Aid Paintings- Let the kids paint with Kool-Aid on cardstock. It will smell fruity and sweet when done.

Finger Paint Rainbows- Have your kids finger paint a rainbow.

Chalk Art- Give your kids some chalk and let them draw to their hearts' content on your sidewalk or driveway. 

Rainbow Craft- Cut out a cloud from a piece of construction paper and glue different colored strips of streamer paper underneath to make a rainbow. Add googly eyes and a smile to the cloud.

Kite- Cut out a diamond shape from cardstock and let your kids decorate it with glitter glue, stickers, etc. Add a colorful streamer on the bottom for a tail. 

Reading Caterpillar- Cut out a round shape with eyes, antennaes, and a smile for the head of the caterpillar and tape it on your child’s bedroom wall. Each time you read a book, add a circle with the book title and author name. Keep doing so all summer until your caterpillar is complete. 

Paint Rocks- Gather rocks from your backyard and have your kids paint them with beautiful designs.


Water Balloon Fight- Fill those water balloons and start throwing.

Water Table Play -If you have a water table, fill it up and add different water toys to it for your kids to play with. If you don’t have a water table, get a large plastic container and fill it with water instead.

Play Video Games Together- We all know that kids love video games, but spending time together is important. Take a few hours out of your day and let your kids teach you how to play their favorite video game. Make sure you put a limit on your time.

Plant a Garden Together- Teach your kids how to plant fruits and vegetables by starting a garden together. They will learn about what it takes to make crops grow and thrive.

Have a Sleepover- Gather your kids’ friends together and have a sleepover on a Friday night. 

Make a Fruit Salad- Gather up your favorite summer fruits and make a fruit salad with your kids.

Sprinkler Fun- Send your kids outside to have fun running in the sprinkler.

Camp in the Backyard- Spend the night camping in your backyard. Don’t forget the hot dogs and s’mores.

Summer Carnival- See if friends and family have outdoor games like corn hole, badminton, kids golf set, kids bowling set (for on the sidewalk), or nostalgic food appliances like a popcorn popper, cotton candy machine, or hot dog machine to have a summer carnival. You could also make your own carnival food like hot dogs, funnel cakes, pizza, popcorn, etc. Gather friends and family for a fun afternoon or evening.

Bird Watching- Put a birdhouse or a hummingbird feeder in your backyard and watch the birds. See how many you can identify on your own and look up the ones you don’t find in a guide or on an app.

Go Fruit-picking- Go to a local fruit farm and pick some fresh fruits.

Makeshift Water Park- Set up the sprinkler or kiddie pool to make a water park in your backyard and invite your kids' friends. If anyone has a Slip n Slide, add that to the fun.

Movie Marathon- Gather your kids’ friends together for a movie marathon and popcorn.

Go to the Library- The library is a great resource for kids to check out new books and movies for free as well as attend kid-friendly events.

Go to the Zoo- Take your kids to the zoo and learn about all the different animals.

Set Up a Lemonade Stand or Bake Sale- Set up a lemonade or bake sale for a few days and teach your kids about money, having goals, saving money, and giving.

Build with Legos- Challenge your kids to build the biggest Lego castle they can.

Play Games- Break out the old school board and card games like Sorry, Candy Land, Chutes n Ladders, Go Fish, and UNO.

Out to Lunch- You can either take your kids out for lunch or make a delicious lunch at home and eat outside.

Indulge in a Treat- Take your kids out for a cone, sundae, or shake.

Go to a Carnival or Fair- Take a night and go to the local carnival or county fair. 

Attend a Free Concert- Look around in your area and see if there are any free concerts going on.

Go to the Cat Cafe- If your older kids love cats, taking them to the cat cafe is a great idea. Make sure you check the website of your local cafe to see if they have age restrictions.

Children’s Museum- Take your kids to the children’s museum for the day.

Learn a New Skill Together- Learn how to cook, make jewelry, or build a robot together.

Charades- Invite your kids’ friends over for a game of charades, and don’t forget the snacks.

Cool Science- Get a book of science experiments and let your kids dive into the learning fun.

Puzzles- Have your kids work on a puzzle to fight their boredom.

Read a Series of Books- Either you and your child can read through their favorite book series together or they can read through it alone. 

Play in the Rain- Let your kids go out when it’s raining and splash in the puddles, build mud pies, and look for worms. 

Bubble Gum-Blowing Contest- Have your kids’ friends over for a bubble gum-blowing contest. Buy some ribbons and prizes for the biggest bubble, smallest bubble, messiest face (after the bubble pops), etc.

Jump Rope- Send your kids outside with a few jump ropes to play with their friends.

Hula Hoop- Have a contest for who can hula the longest.

Fly a Kite- Go to an open field and fly either a homemade kite or one that you bought at the store.

There are lots of ways to make sure your kids have plenty to do this summer. Look through this list, choose a few crafts and activities, and start planning the best summer ever.

Photo Credit: ©Getty Images/Imgorthand