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Summer Activities to try with your Children

As summer approaches, PLASP Child Care Services has some fun activity suggestions for families to try together. Below are three fan-favourites! For more summer activities, PLASP invites you to check out past blog posts from the summer of 2020. 

Activity 1: Driveway Snakes & Ladders 

Many of you may know the popular board game “Snakes and Ladders”, but what happens when you create a life-sized version outdoors? You get an activity that allows children to get fresh air while developing some artistic and mathematical skills, that’s what!

What you need:

- An open space that can be drawn on such as concrete, bricks or patio stones. Driveways work very well. If you don’t have a driveway, a backyard patio can work too. 

- Sidewalk chalk

- Dice – either borrowed from an existing board game you own, or create a large-scale version using a cube-shaped box and drawing the appropriate numbers on each side.

Process:

- Work with your child(ren) to create a large rectangular perimeter. On a traditional Snakes and Ladders game board, there are one-hundred spaces. If space permits, go for it! Have children use sidewalk chalk to draw a 10 X 10 grid. Feel free to modify the amount of squares on your board game to fit what works within your space.

- Have children number squares from 1 to 100 (or whatever number of squares you have created) starting in the bottom left corner. See diagram above.

- Draw some snakes and ladders! Each snake and each ladder should start and end on one specific square and move players up and down the board. Landing on the tail of a snake means a player must travel down the snake back to its head – losing ground back towards the start. Landing on the lower portion of the ladder allows a player to “climb” the ladder up the board, closer to the finish!

Players take turns rolling the dice, moving that number of spaces, and seeing who can reach the top of the board first!

 

Activity 2: Homemade Frozen Yogurt Bars

Time for a homemade treat that children and adults can make and enjoy together!  

What You Will Need:

- 2 cups of Greek Yogurt (or a yogurt of your choice)
- 5 oz Blueberries (fresh or frozen)
- 2 oz Berries of your choice
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- ½ Lemon, juiced
- 4 tbsp Maple Syrup
- Bowl
- Saucepan
- Baking Dish
- Wax Paper

Directions

1. Combine the lemon juice and blueberries in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Cook until all the blueberries have popped and allow to cool off. 

2. In a medium bowl combine the yogurt, vanilla and maple syrup. Fold in the blueberry sauce once cooled. 

3. Line a shallow baking dish with wax paper and pour in the yogurt mix. 

4. Sprinkle with the fresh berries and freeze 4 to 6 hours until frozen solid. Cut them into 2-3-inch bars and enjoy.

Tip: Have children help with the measuring of ingredients to add a math component to this activity.

 Adapted from: https://veggiesociety.com/frozen-yogurt-bars-recipe-vegan/

 

Activity 3: Painting Rocks

You don't have to be Picasso to paint some great rocks! 

What you will need:

- Rocks to paint (larger rocks allow for a more in-depth design)
- Paint (acrylic works best and is quite weather resistant!)
- Paint brushes
- Paper plates (or something to pour the paints onto)

Process:

Encourage children to go on a scavenger hunt to find a few rocks that they would like to paint. 

Cleaning the rocks off with soapy water and letting them dry prior to painting allows paint to adhere better to the rock.

It’s time to paint your rocks! Children should use their imaginations – they can paint designs, and pictures, plus add messages if they like.

Allow children to experiment by mixing paint colours on a paper plate or other container onto which they can pour paint.

Tip: Painted rocks add a bit of colour and cheer to any indoor or outdoor space. Discuss with your child where the rocks should be displayed once finished.

 

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