Three Outdoor Summer Projects to Keep Kids Occupied

Sunny Still Life

This easy summer project requires nothing more than some construction paper and some everyday objects. Place pieces of construction paper in the Sun and then challenge kids to arrange objects on the papers to create a fun design. The objects will need to be heavy enough that they will not be blown off, or they can be secured with some small pebbles. For example, kids might arrange leaves and acorns in a pattern (but the leaves will need to be weighted down), or they might make words out of small coins or pebbles. Leave the paper in the sunny area for at least one day. When you remove the objects, you will see that their shapes still appear on the paper.

This is a great time to explain how the sun has “bleached” the rest of the paper, but the darker parts of the paper were not open to the sun because they were hidden under the objects.

Make a Volcano

This science project is the perfect way to mix science, summer, and fun! You’ll need plenty of sand or soil, a soda bottle, and some vinegar and baking soda. Just place the soda bottle outside and show kids how to use the sand or soil to build a volcano around it. Then carefully pour a tablespoon of baking soda into the bottle, and then add a cup of vinegar and stand back. The volcano will erupt just like a real volcano, spewing out “lava” all over the ground.

Summer Sand Art

If you’re going on a trip to the beach, you’ll have access to plenty of sand. Take advantage of this potential art supply by gathering up some sand and taking it home in a large container. Divide the sand into several different bowls, and pour a small amount of water and a different color of food coloring into each bowl. Let the sand soak for a while until it looks like the right color, and then drain off the water and let the sand dry. This will create some beautiful colored sand that you can use for kids’ summer projects.

Dry out a used water bottle and pour different colors of sand inside of it for a layered effect. Alternatively, outline a picture, smear glue on the area you would like to color, pour on a color of sand, and then spill off the excess. After you let it dry, the glued area will be “sanded” with the color you chose. Use your imagination to think of other project ideas for the colored sand you’ve made.

Other Summer Art Ideas

If you have a preschooler, check out some of these summer art projects for preschool kids. You can also try some of these summer art activities for children of all ages. And don’t forget to try out some of these nature crafts for kids!

This post is part of the series: Summer Fun for Kids

Looking for some fun ideas to use this summer with your kids? This series has activities, games, and projects that your kids will love.
  1. Three Summer Projects for Kids
  2. Tried & True Craft Ideas for Summer Camp Fun
  3. Productive Science Activities for the Summer