My kids will be staying home this Summer, as the cost of day camp is high and the quality often low. Since they will be with me 24/7, I have been putting together a schedule of activities to keep them occupied and happy. I’ve already signed them up for the New York Public Library Summer Reading Program, and I plan to bring them to as many public parks and free events in our area as possible. However, I feel that it is important for the kids to get a chance to express their inner creative geek each day, too! To that end, I have acquired oodles and oodles of art and craft supplies to keep their imaginations flourishing over the Summer break.
It’s amazing what you can find if you know where to look. Many people sell craft supplies on eBay and Etsy, where I have acquired yarn, doll hair, gourds, magnets, and beads. I plan to let the kids paint some gourds and make little Fridge Pixies and kitchen witches like I used to sell on Etsy. Michael’s craft store turned out to have a ton of stickers, scrapbooking materials, interesting paper punches, and fun cardstock on clearance for an amazing price (some things were less than fifty cents!). I was also able to get some small wooden model kits, unfinished birdhouses, doll furniture, and modeling compound for a very reasonable price. I’m hoping to supply the ingredients for them to make fun new things they can use in their imaginary play.
Of course, they will want time for computers and television as well. Our Netflix subscription allows me to show them things I liked as a kid and lets them explore some new things as well. They both love pbskids.org and related websites, and they both adore Phineas and Ferb. I also managed to find them some great workbooks to keep them current academically over the break, and I got plenty of paper (recycled, of course!), crayons, markers and paint for free-form fun. Now the challenge is to make a schedule that can fit all of these wonderful things while still allowing time for me to do my schoolwork!
Between coupons, clearance sales, and sheer luck, I managed to acquire all of the Summer art & craft goodies for about $100, which certainly beats the cost for eight weeks of camp for two kids! What ideas/Summer plans do the rest of you have for your little creative geniuses? We’re always interested in new suggestions!