17 Around the World Activities for a DIY Summer Camp

17 Around the World Activities for a DIY Summer Camp

Welcome to our first week of DIY Summer Camp -- this week's theme is Around the World!

Summer is a great time to explore a new topic or dive deep into a favorite theme with kids -- the days are longer and the schedules are lighter :)

Finding a summer camp near me that's also related to something my kids really enjoy can be a challenge at times (like the year my son was infatuated with the Giant Squid!) so doing an at-home summer camp is a great solution!

At home summer camp's do not have to be complicated or expensive! 

You know me -- I do easy ;)

Each week, we'll share some fun & inexpensive ideas around a popular theme or topic along with some free printables & a simple 'formula' that will help you to quickly pull together some fun activites that your kids will LOVE too!

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Winter Craft & Science: Nature Art with Ice

Winter Craft & Science: Nature Art with Ice

Enjoy this easy Winter craft that combines science, nature & art -- perfect for kids of all ages!

I'll be the first to admit that once Winter sets in, looking for ways to incorpation nature into our day becomes more of a challenge. 

There's always that excitement for the first snow fall when we can head out and explore for animal tracks or make a snowman but everything is so bare and mostly colorless at this time of the year.

That is, unless you take nature into your own hands, add in a little science and create a colorful craft for your window (which is exactly what we did when the temperature dipped last week)!

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15 DIY Fall Garland Crafts for Kids

15 DIY Fall Garland Crafts for Kids

Fall has finally arrived in our neck of the woods! 

This past weekend, it was 90 degrees (ugh!) and then whoosh! Fall weather swept in with those cool nights and gorgeous days.  And when the weather changes, it always puts me in the mood to pull out the seasonal decorations :)

A few years back, I realized that many of our holiday decorations were either things the kids made at school or store-bought items.  As our kids started to get older, I knew I wanted to have some family-created items that would become cherished parts of our holiday traditions.

One of the perfect group crafting item is garland!  So I thought I would round-up some beautiful Autumn strands that you can make together (as a family or even in a classroom) and are perfect for Fall, Halloween or Thanksgiving.

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The BEST Halloween Decoration: Ideas for the Front Porch and Trunk or Treat Event

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias and its advertiser. All opinions & design ideas are mine alone. #TrickOrSweet #CollectiveBias

 

Every Halloween, we run into the same dilemma -- who will hand out the candy at our house?!

It all started the first Halloween BOTH the kids were old enough to trick or treat.  As we dressed to head out the door, my son asked "But if we all go, who will hand out the candy?"

We told him it would be fine if we were gone for a little while but it wasn't fine for him --

"What if my friends come while we're gone?  They won't think we do Halloween!"

Hmmm....it certainly is a dilemma.  We love heading out with the kids on Halloween night and visiting with the neighbors.  But I also like all the neighborhood kids to be excited when they stop by our house and not see a dark porch.

So we needed to create a good way to hand out the candy while we were off enjoying ourselves.

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Halloween Glitter Glow Sensory Craft

I want to introduce you to our newest craft project -- we call them Frank, Pete & Mike :)

What else would you call a monster, pumpkin and mummy, right?

We loved making the Halloween Salt-dough Glitter Garland last year so I thought we'd try our hand at another glittery Halloween craft.

But we uped the anty with these -- we wanted something that was not only fun to make but was also interactive and had a sensory component to it.

Not to mention their awesome ability to go from day to night so the kids can enjoy it 24/7 -- they can even be used as a fun nightlight during the Halloween season :)

 

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Easy Nature Craft for Kids: Zentangle Rocks

I've learned a few things over the years when it comes to getting kids to talk & share --

First, a good snack goes a long way ;) 

And second, kids are more likely to open up when they are preoccupied in an activity WITH an adult.

If you're doing something (like prepping dinner or checking email) while trying to have a conversation with the kids, you'll probably hear a lot of "Good." or "Fine." when you ask about their day.

BUT -- if you're both engaged in an easy & quiet activity (like a fun scavenger hunt or an easy art project) you'll be amazed at how much kids are willing to share.

Enter Zentangle Rocks!

Have you ever zentangled before? 

It's so easy, lots of fun and actually a very relaxing way to spend some time together.

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28 Things You Can Do with Rocks

Rocks!

You find them in jacket pockets, lined up on window sills and creating havoc in your dryer.

And yet, when you had one over to the kids and ask them to return it to the yard, their faces gasp in horror ...

"MOM!  This is --

-- the newest in my collection! 

-- a dinosaur fossil!

-- the one that I found on our trip to Grandpa's!"

It's amazing how much promise can be found in one little stone :)

 

Gathering rocks is a right of childhood. 

They are easily found, come in a variety of shapes & sizes and when you're a pint-sized person, they are simply too close to your grasp to not pick up and pocket any time you get the chance.

But what to do with that growing group of gemstones?

We've got a few ideas that will inspire the kids and 'rock' your world (sorry, just couldn't resist ;)

 

Rock crafts and activities for kids

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30 Early Garden Crafts & Ideas for Kids

30 Early Garden Crafts & Ideas for Kids

These garden crafts & ideas for kids are sure to get you excited for warmer weather!

For some people, the sight of green grass or tulips popping up means Spring has arrived but for me, it's the sight of a seed packet!

Sometime in February, I realize that Spring is only weeks away (yea!!) and it's time to think about gardening with the kids.

Now, I'll be the first to tell you that I am not someone who was blessed with a green thumb.  I don't have this amazing garden by any means.

However, I do love to have flowers and vegetables growing in the yard.

And I really love to see kids get involved in growing veggies or choosing a cool new plant.

It's pretty amazing when you can send them outside to "pick the tomatoes you grew for the salad tonight"!  Or to watch them count the number of cucumbers that are growing on a vine.

So let's ignore the winter weather and start some gardening prep today!

 

Early Garden Ideas and Crafts for Kids

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Cinnamon Scented Jingle Bell Placecards

The tree is up, the halls are decked and we are counting down the days until family 'comes to town'.

Most of our relatives are miles away from us so we really look forward to having them visit, especially during the holidays.

But I will admit, it can be a bit daunting to double the number of people in your house overnight.  So I love to find ways that the kids can help as we get ready for our guests.

One area I always let the kids take over is decorating the holiday table.  In addition to setting and clearing for meals, I also count on them to put together centerpieces, arrange cookie trays and create other festive ways to decorate the table for holidays.

So today's "Get Ready for the Relatives" project are these adorable Cinnamon Scented Jingle Bell Placecards!

 

Decorating the Holiday Table: DIY Name Cards for Guests

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Easy Handmade Ornaments: Christmas Shadow Box

Do your kids love to make handmade ornaments for Christmas? 

Then you will go CRAZY over today's activity - Handmade Shadow Box ornaments!

We are joining 50+ bloggers who are each sharing a wonderful idea for ornaments kids can make this year.  TONS of wonderful ways to decorate the tree and the kids won't want to stop at just one. 

Plus, so many are quick and inexpensive that you can easily fit in a few during the holiday season -- and they also make great gifts for grandparents too!

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