It seems about the time when the heat forces many indoors and the kids get a bit antsy. We used to live in the desert and found some ways to provide fun for about a dollar or less. Don’t assume big kids won’t have fun with these ideas, they might be your most enthusiastic participants!
* Barbasol. Remember those cheap cans of shaving cream? For under a buck hours of entertainment can be purchased. Give the kids a can and a tabletop, they will think of great ways to use it up. They can draw pictures, smear and start again. Practice ABC’s and math facts. Play games like tic tac toe. See how high of a tower they can make before it starts slipping. Add a few action figures or Lego people and whole new games emerge. I’d recommend putting a plastic tablecloth down first. It didn’t ever damage my table but was challenging to get the “feel” off.
* Chalk. Bring back the old school fun of four square and hopscotch. Create drawing challenges. This can be done in the garage with the fan on and swept off fairly easily.
* Bubbles. If your kids are small put them in the tub and let them blow! Bubbles are easy to make, but they are so cheap to buy at Dollar stores, that might be the cheapest way to go. Don’t settle for little blowers, take wire and create your own shapes and predict which ones will work best.
* Marble runs. Do you have marbles lying around the house? Cardboard? Older kids can imagine some pretty awesome marble runs with a few toilet paper tubes (gift wrap tubes, paper towel tubes, pvc pipe) Just the game of marbles is fun, and much harder than I remember from my own childhood.
* Playdough. This is super easy to make and by adding a pack of kool aid it will smell great too. Give specific challenges when the fun seems to start fading. Who can create__________?