Trying to figure out how to plan your summer? Here’s how we’re planning ours, plus I’ve got a free printable for your kids summer schedule, goal setting, and more!
Let’s talk about kids summer schedule and planning
Today is our first day of summer, so summer planning has been in full force for the last few weeks!
I always think it’s helpful to plan your summer a few weeks before school actually gets out, so if you still have a few days or weeks of school, now is the time to get prepped.
Here’s how we’re planning our summer
This summer will be a little chaotic for us, because we’re moving to St. Louis in three weeks! If you missed the details of that, READ THIS POST.
We bought a house in St. Louis, but won’t move in until mid August, so our summer will be spent in temporary housing…which to me is all the more reason to plan, so we don’t go crazy!!
My kids and I both need some structure. Many moms and kids love to go with the flow everyday — if that’s you, that’s totally awesome. Do what works best for you and your family.
I like a mix of scheduling and go-with-the-flow, but a schedule must be in there somewhere. And with the move, I know I’ll have to be more go-with-the-flow than normal.
Our summer planning session
On Sunday night a few weeks ago, I drew out a summer planning sheet for each of my kids.
We talked about summer goals, things they want to do each day, some family summer bucket list ideas, and things they need for the summer.
We also did a large calendaring session and got all of our trips and day camps on the calendar so we have things to look forward to and can plan the rest of our days accordingly!
Some of their entries, if you need some starter ideas:
- Summer goals examples:
- learn how to cook 3 things completely on my own
- go to the park three times a week and practice basketball shooting – 50 layups on each side, 50 free throws, 50 three-point shots
- learn how to ride a bike with pedals
- Things they need/want examples
- elbow and knee pads for skateboarding
- new swim shirt
- two new pairs of summer shorts
- Daily schedule examples:
- Monday: park for basketball practice, pool, piano practice
- Tuesday: library, piano practice
- Wednesday: park, pool, piano practice
- Family activities examples:
- make homemade ice cream
- do an escape room
- visit a museum in our new city
- go to the zoo
Here’s the printable if you want a copy for your kids!
Get Your Summer Planning Sheet Below!
Creating a rough summer daily schedule
Once the boys had filled out their printable sheets, I went through everything and make a rough daily schedule that allows me to still get my work done, but also gives us lots of time together, time to work on their summer goals, and plenty of free time.
Our rough daily routine
- Wake up before the kids. Workout and scripture study.
- Morning expectations for the kids (dressed, beds made, teeth brushed, hair done, etc).
- I make them breakfast and then shower/get ready while they eat
- A several hour block of time together doing an indoor or outdoor activity (pool, water park, library, playdate, park, work on their summer skill goals, etc)
- Home for lunch
- My work time block while the boys do quiet time and have free unstructured time
- I make dinner
- Dinner together and evening family time
We plan to do a scheduling time each Sunday evening to plan out our morning activities each day, contact any friends we want to play with that week (let’s hope we can find friends quickly), and decide on our weekend plan.
MW COLLECTION DRESS | SIMILAR PINK SUEDE HAT | ECCO SNEAKERS
MERRICK WHITE COLLECTION FLORAL DRESS
Some Great Boredom Buster Ideas
Boredom for kids is a good thing. I’m sure you know about studies about how boredom leads to our greatest creativity. Yes, yes, and more yes. I give my kids lots of free time and quiet time and their imaginations are HUGE. It’s so good for them.
But sometimes it’s also nice to have a little list of ideas that they can draw from when they’re feeling uninspired…something to get their creative juices flowing again.
So I created this big list of INDOOR BOREDOM BUSTERS + OUTDOOR BOREDOM BUSTERS that you can easily do without much planning or resources. You can print the list easily RIGHT HERE.
30+ INDOOR BOREDOM BUSTERS
- Pull out paper cups and try to make the tallest tower you can
- Do a puzzle
- Play a board game together
- Make homemade popsicles
- Create a craft bin with popsicle sticks, stickers, tape, rubber pants, paper clips, clothes pins, etc and let them get creative!
- Play charades together
- Create some sensory bins for your kids to play with
- Build a fort
- Have a dance party
- Make some homemade play dough
- Do a drawing from Art for Kids Hub Youtube Channel
- Make paper airplanes
- Film a lip sync video with choreography
- Write a letter to Grandma and Grandpa or cousins and send it in the mail
- Play a board or card game (my favorites HERE)
- Do a leaf rubbing drawing with crayons
- Learn a new song on the piano
- Write your own story and draw pictures to go with it
- Make bracelets
- Use paper cups as bowling pins and play indoor bowling with whatever ball you have
- Listen to an audiobook (a list of some of our favorites is right HERE)
- Make an afternoon snack together
- Work on your summer skill goal
- Teach a younger sibling how to play a new game
- Learn how to cross-stitch or crochet
- Make bean bags and learn how to play hacky sack or have a bean bag toss
- Print a coloring page off of the internet and color
- Make a cereal necklace with a string and some dry cereal, then go outside and snack on it!
- Use toilet paper/paper towel rolls to create a marble run on the wall or a door
- Turn off the lights and do shadow puppets
- Play dress up
- Roll up your socks and have an indoor snowball fight with the socks
20+ OUTDOOR BOREDOM BUSTERS
- Try a new park together
- Go swimming
- Go to see a matinee movie
- Go to the library
- Go to the zoo
- Call a friend and have a playdate
- Go to a movie in the park
- Run through the sprinklers
- Create a slip and slide
- Go to the splash pad
- Put together a picnic for dinner that night
- Wash the car
- Sidewalk Chalk
- Have a water balloon toss/fight
- Ride your bike
- Take a walk together
- Do bubbles in the backyard
- Go get the mail
- Have a three legged race
- Draw hopscotch on the sidewalk and play
- Fill a big bucket with water and bob for apples
- Make a volcano in the dirt with a soda bottle, soap, baking soda, and vinegar
- Set up an obstacle course and take turns going through it
PRINT THIS ENTIRE LIST RIGHT HERE
Leave a comment if you have any other great ideas you’d like to add to this list!
A final thought about planning your kids summer schedule
Every family has such different needs and personalities, so as you make your summer plans, think about your children’s needs, and your personal capacity as a mom.
Don’t set your expectations higher or differently than you can achieve or you’ll just set yourself up for frustration and failure!
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Because my daughter isn’t in school yet, this is actually very similar to the schedule we follow year-round, and it really does make a difference! We do something every morning (although I totally count grocery shopping as a “fun” morning activity since she still loves it), and that leaves the afternoons free for her to take a nap and for me to blog or work on the house. I’ve been so consistent at planning something nearly every morning that she’s learned to ask me first thing after waking up what we’re doing that day, and it’s been really good for both of us to have that structure and something outside of the house to look forward to.
Since we’re pretty constrained on budget, we can’t do a ton of big family things, but we DO make sure we have at least one family “day adventure” every single month. Often, it’s something inexpensive or free (this month’s was a picnic at the park and flying kites), but occasionally we’ll splurge and do something bigger.
I love that! You’re such a good mama!
Boredom isn’t always bad. As you go through life you won’t be able to fit every spare minute with activities, so teaching your child to be o.k. with boredom and o.k. with their own quiet thoughts, is also a useful skill. I love the lazy days of summer and don’t schedule or plan anything (except trips which require it). There aren’t enough days in life where you don’t have to live by a schedule or a to-do list and my memories of my childhood summers weren’t about where we went or what we did but about that feeling of freedom. Of just being.
Our summer plans def. include lots of boredom.
(just another viewpoint). 😉
Yes, I totally agree! This is exactly why we do quiet time in our home – lots of time to think, be silent, and be creative.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts!
One thing i Didnt see on the list but love is volunteering for older kids. Its never too early to starT maKing kids feel like THEy CAN be productive members of society. I BELIEVE kids should learn early that life doesnt REVOLVE around them and give back.
I love this idea!! I’ll add it to the list — appreciate your insights!
I love this post! Thank you for Sharing all of your pOsitivity!! ♥️♥️♥️
Thanks for reading!!
Hi merrick! I know you’ve had it for a while, but where was your striped, collared shirt from? I remember loving it when you first posted it with your favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, and your post today reminded me! Thanks!
It’s from Asos!
This post is amazing! I am a New(Ish) stepmom and a teacher and i am planning to help give structure to our summer with a ton of these ideas. Thank you for helping me build a good relationship with my stepdaughters!
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Such a Beautiful article for organizing. I love it. My husband and I want to have some custom wardrobes made for the master and guest bedrooms in our home because the present storage is pretty lacking. Reading your article help out me realize that this would be the perfect time to do a wardrobe check as well!
THANKS FOR SHARING THIS POST! GREAT IDEAS! I AM DREAMING ABOUT SUMMERTIME!
Thank you so much for sharing your ideas. I’ll definitely ask my children what their summer expectAtions and goals Are! I’ve just downloaded the google sheets app and copied your family economy spreadsheets to let my two ‘manage’ their mOney this summer! Some really great tips amd ideas. I Love your posts!! xx
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