Money Moment: Summer Boredom Busters on a Budget- Part 1
June 27, 2017 @ 11:08 am CDT
By Dr. Jennifer Hunter
Dr. Jennifer Hunter
Welcome back to Episode 8 of Money Moment, with your host Dr. Jennifer Hunter.
The kids have only been out of school for a few weeks but have you already heard ‘I’m bored’ more times than you can count? Often when looking for things to beat summer boredom, the expenses can start to add up. But, there are many low cost, low budget ideas to beat summer boredom. This is the first of a two-part episode sharing low-cost summer boredom busters.
These are all tips I have tried with my kiddos!
Paper airplanes and boats are a simple, cheap, and fun to create, decorate and race. All you need is paper, scissors and water for a boat race. If you do a boat race, you can use your bathtub for easy access and clean-up. You can find free templates to print out online, and your kids can spend extra time decorating their paper plane or paper boat.
This summer, do not pay for a show but put on your own instead. Why spend the extra cash on a show when you can get more time and enjoyment out of putting on your own theatrical performance? You can even hold it outside so you can enjoy the nice summer weather as well! The family can spend time together– creating their storyline, costumes or even puppets.
Use some old sacks, extra peanuts or eggs and have a race. Your whole family can get involved in this fun activity. Not only can you do this repeatedly, but the items are safe for the environment if they get lost in the yard.
Check out the summer garage sales. They’re very popular for summer months and you can find great items for a steal of a price. Give yourself or the kids a $5 budget and see how many items you can get for that low price. This not only saves money from spending the extra cash at expensive stores but it’s also fun to look through all the different items. You can even create a contest to see who can find the best deal for their $5 budget.
Is pizza a family go-to as an easy dinner during the summer? Instead of ordering delivery, take a trip to the pizza store and ask them for a lesson in making pizza. Most places will either welcome the opportunity or schedule a time that you can come in with your family. Not only is this a fun learning activity but it will also be super yummy as well.
Instead of spending money on new books this summer, sit down and write your own. You can also illustrate it as well. Your family can work on it together, each create their own part and connect them together. This is a great way to get creative as a family.
Host a block party. Get together with your neighbors, friends and family and take over the block. Have each guest bring something of their own to contribute to save everyone money. This is a great summer activity and it gives you the chance to get to know your neighborhood better.
Visit your local fire station. Take your family and even some of your children’s friends. This is an exciting trip that can teach the whole family important information about fire safety. This is an activity that you should call ahead to schedule a time for your visit.
Be a local tourist. Visit the local TV station, radio station, newspaper or historical sites. This can be educational as well as lots of fun. Who knows—the trip may even inspire someone for a future career!
With the kids out of school, they do not get as many opportunities to express their creativity. Give them some art supplies or even just some paper and crayons. Don’t worry about using up all of your art supplies: August will be a great month for restocking those items with back-to-school specials. More on that in a future episode!
Make an art kit. You can purchase many simple craft supplies that can be used for multiple different projects. Find supplies that cost between $0.25 and $1. Think about crayons, markers, colored pencils, watercolor paints, finger or poster paints, scissors, glue, chalk, construction paper, coloring paper and drawing paper. You can collect all of these items for under $10.
Reuse and repurpose when building up that arts and crafts kit. Look for items around your house and reuse them for a new creative purpose. Save toilet paper and paper towel rolls, magazines, milk cartons, bottles, Popsicle sticks, cotton balls, buttons, ribbons and fabric. Find an old box and have your kids decorate it into a new arts and crafts holding box.
Have a family movie day. Choose a movie as a family and make it a special night. Rent the move from a local dollar kiosk and make some popcorn or other family favorite treat. Another option is to find a local movie theatre that offers special deals during the summer months: earlier matinees, dollar movies, discounted admission or “children in for free” offers. Do some digging to find out what is available to you.
Are you ready to tackle summer boredom? Join us for the next episode for more tips on beating summer boredom on a budget.
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This material is based upon work supported by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Office of Military Family Readiness Policy, U.S. Department of Defense under Award Number 2019-48770-30366.