With the kids thick in summer vacation, keeping them entertained while on a budget can feel like a difficult task. Luckily, a lot of parents have been stuck in this exact scenario, and they’ve come up with some incredible ways to keep the young ones distracted without spending a lot of money. From glitter bombs to DIY bowling, it turns out there are a million ways to keep them happy throughout the day!
16. Make a Soap Cloud
Put a bar of soap into the microwave to create a cool soap cloud that will have your kids entertained for hours.
15. Homemade Twister
This one is super fun and an easy way to get the kids outside! Grab some spray paint and get the bodies moving!
14. DIY Paint Bombs
The colors drive the kids absolutely crazy in this one, and it’s a fun way to brighten up your child’s day.
According to growingajeweledrose.com, all you need are some everyday items like:
- Zip-lock bags
- corn starch
- food coloring or liquid watercolors
- baking soda
- paper towels or napkins
“Mix the corn starch, vinegar and food coloring. Fill your bags at least 1/3 of the way with the mixture. Take a square piece of paper towel and put some baking soda in the middle. Form the ’bomb’. Place the ’bomb’ into the bag and seal it. Shake the bag really hard. The bag will slowly expand and a few minutes later — boom! Your sidewalks will be covered with paint and the kids will be happy.”
It’s easily taken off any walls and floors with some water as well, making the cleanup easy for parents at the end of the day.
13. Kids + Sand
Kids love getting their hands dirty, and this is a great way to bring the sand that kids love into your home without the mess. If you take a grainy substance, like sugar for example, put it into a secure box and let your children draw into the faux-sand with a pencil. This is great for your young ones that are learning how to write letters.
While it’s unlikely that your children will be involved in any laser-enducing heists any time soon, it’s a great way to bring out some creative flexibility for your kids. Set up some string in a way that looks like something you would see in the movies, and let your kids run wild!
11. Rainbow colored bubbles
This is a fantastic way to please the young ones!
Making this is easy, all you need is:
- a plastic bottle
- a sock
- food coloring
- dishwashing liquid
To craft this DIY bubble maker, cut off the bottom portion of a regular plastic water or soda bottle and slide a clean sock over the cut area. Put some food coloring on the sock and then mix the soap with some water before dipping the sock covered part of the bottle into the mixture. Let the kids blow!
10. Pool Scrabble
All you need for this one is a bunch of cheap sponges and a sharpie, as well as a pool! Teach your little ones how to spell with this DIY version of Scrabble.
9. DIY Sprinkler
Let the kids run through water with a DIY sprinkler. Poke some holes into a large soda bottle and duck tape a hose to the bottle opening. The water will quickly spill all over and will have your kids running around outside for hours!
8. Indoor hopscotch
Maybe you need the kids inside for a day, but they’re restless and in need of an energy outlet. Take some colored tape and create a space for hopscotch inside!
7. Make Glow in the Dark Glitter Slime
Kids love getting their hands dug into some slime, and this glow-in-the-dark slime will capture your children’s attention for hours at a time. Take a look at the video above or the directions below from Buzzfeed!
Glow-In-The-Dark Glitter Slime
6 oz glitter glue
¼ cup water
2 tbsp glow-in-the-dark paint
½ cup liquid starch
¼ tsp baking soda
1. In a large bowl pour out 6 oz of glitter glue.
2. Fill the glue container up with ¼ cup of water, close and shake. Pour the glue and water mixture into the bowl.
3. Add 2 tbsp of glow-in-the-dark paint to the mixture.
4. Add glitter to the bowl and thoroughly mix. We used a combination of 7 glitters: holographic glitter, fairy sparkle glitter, iridescent glitter, fine cut glitter, extra fine cut glitter, sparkling glitter and crystal ice glitter.
5. Add ½ a cup of liquid starch and mix until the slime starts to come together.
6. Add ¼ tsp baking soda to the mixture.
7. Knead the slime with your hands to ensure all the ingredients have combined.
6. Tissue Art
If your kids like arts and crafts, this is a great way to get some new decorations from your artist children! Cut strips of tissue paper, and let your kids’ imagination go. You’ll have a piece that’ll look great up on the walls in no time.
5. DIY Bowling
Take some old cans, paint them into various fun colors and bowl with your kids using a plastic ball. It is sure to be a fun way to keep the day going without leaving the house.
4. Stairs that become a slide
This one is probably one of the easiest and funnest ways to keep your kids entertained. If you live in a house with wide stairs, set down sme cardboard and let your kids slide down. Make sure to keep the cardboard secure, and keep your eyes on them to make sure they don’t slip.
3. Play-Doh Balloon Toy
Throw some clay/play-doh into some balloons to make it a brand new toy. With a malleability, the balloon is a perfect way to keep your children’s fidgety hands in check!
2. Marble Art
Take a piece of paper and put it into a pan that doesn’t let the marble escape, take some colors, and let the marble go nuts on the paper! This is for sure a fun way to get your kids into arts and crafts.
1. DIY Foam Art
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This requires a little bit of extensive prep beforehand, but this is sure to be great fun for kids!
To make foam paint, all you need is:
- Two 4 oz. bottles of WASHABLE school glue
- 1 cup white flour
- 4-5 cups plain white shaving foam
- food coloring drops
- 1 gallon plastic zipper bag
- sandwich-sized plastic zipper bags – 1 per food coloring
- Optional: plastic squirt bottles (such as used for tie-dyeing)
Thetiptoefairy explains further the directions to make this concoction:
- In a gallon-size plastic zipper bag add 1 cup of flour.
- Pour both bottles of washable school glue on top of the flour. Make sure it’s washable for easy cleanup!
- Spray about 4-5 cups of shaving foam into the bag. At first, I attempted to measure it in a measuring cup, but it was ridiculous trying to get it out of the measuring cup. So, after the first cup, I just eyeballed it.
- Close the bag and knead it for a few minutes until everything is totally mixed.
- Snip one corner of the big bag and squirt into sandwich-sized plastic zipper bags to divide it up per color. I went with four neon food coloring bottles, so I divided it up into 4 smaller bags. One each of blue, purple, pink, and green.
- Add 10 drops of one food coloring to each bag.
- Knead each smaller bag until color is throughout all the bag.
- 8. Snip off the edge and squirt it into plastic squirt bottles. Or you can just paint with the zipper bags. If you keep it in the bags, just snip off a tiny corner, so it doesn’t come out too heavy.
This is sure to get your children making all kinds of designs on your sidewalk!
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