I don’t know about anyone else, but for me this school year flew by. It’s June already and that means the next couple of weeks are going to be hectic – filled with class picnics, parties, school field days, thinking about and buying teacher gifts, and anything else that can be crammed in before the last day of school. Suddenly my calm, quiet days will be replaced by the chaos of having two elementary-schoolers home all day, every day for the next two months.
I always try to plan something for the last day of school to celebrate all of their hard work and to start their vacation off on a high note. This year I’ve decided to surprise them with a mini vacation. They have a half day of school so when they get home, their bags will be packed and ready to go. They will only need to drop their backpacks off in the house, use the bathroom to hopefully avoid having to stop within the first half hour, and then we’ll be off. This is the first time we’ve gone anywhere on the last day of school so we’ll see how it goes. Usually, I find something local to do with them. Here are 11 activities that I’ve found in the area to do.
Grab the family, grab some friends, and head to the closest mini golf course. There are several in the area to choose from. Have a friendly competition to see who can get the most hole-in-ones or who can get the lowest (or highest!) score.
Go Kart racing is another fun activity for the whole family. See who the best and fastest driver is and give them bragging rights until the next time there’s a rematch.
Take the kids to the local ice cream shop for cones or let them splurge on sundaes – they deserve it! This can also be paired up with another fun activity such as mini golf or go kart racing.
They aren’t called summer blockbusters for nothing. There are a ton of great movies that just came out or are coming out within the next few weeks including, Wonder Woman, Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, and Cars 3. Relax in an air conditioned theater or enjoy an old-fashioned night out at the drive-in.
Water Balloon/Water Gun Fight
Tape a note to the front door telling them to drop their backpacks off inside and meet you in the backyard for a surprise. Have the balloons/guns waiting for them, all ready to go, when they get there. Bonus: sneak attacks are fun!
Have a pool in the backyard? Enjoy the benefits of it when they get home from school. If not, take them to the town pool or a nearby beach. They’ll love cooling off in the water after being stuck inside sitting at a desk all day.
Sit down with the kids when they get home and make a list of all of the fun things you’d like to do together over the summer. Then go out and get started on that list.
End of the Year Gift
Buy them something that they can use over the summer and let them start using it right away. A few ideas are bubbles, sidewalk chalk, books, a new bathing suit, or anything else that they can play with outside or even inside on a rainy day. Build up the suspense by having a scavenger hunt and give them clues to find their presents.
Most libraries have a summer reading program. Take them to sign up for it and give them a head start by checking out some books while you’re there and then take them home and read together.
Playground or Park
Pack some food and take them to a playground or park. Have them burn off some energy and build up an appetite running around and then sit down together and have a picnic.
Hike or Nature Walk
There are some great trails in the area. Take advantage of them and bring along a list of items for them to find while they’re walking. Have a contest to see who can finish the list first or find the most items.