It can be tough to find new activities for your kids to participate in every summer. So, if you’re looking for a few new and fun ideas, here are some fantastic activities to sign your kids up for. They’ll thank you later!

Vacation Bible School

Vacation Bible School, or VBS, usually takes place at your local church and you don’t have to be regular attenders to sign your kids up. It typically lasts one week and during this time, your kids will read scripture, sing songs, and make crafts. They’ll usually be provided with a snack or lunch as well if it’s a full-day program. VBS is usually themed, so they might spend the week pretending to be pirates or astronauts. Your kids will be put into a group with other kids their age and will get to play games and learn together. VBS is a great way to get your kids involved in something fun without a major money or time commitment. They’ll spend quality time with their peers and learn more about religion, which might be important to you. If you don’t work over the summer, you could even volunteer. VBS is the perfect activity for kids who want something fun to do, but don’t want to go away to camp.

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Summer Camp

For your kids who want to get out of the house for a bit, send them to a sleep-away camp. Summer camp has plenty to offer kids who easily get bored over the summer. Your son or daughter will be able to live independently for a week or two and will learn to cope without you there. He or she will get to try different activities like archery, horseback riding, boating, and campfire making. They might take an overnight hike and spend the night camping in the woods. Your kid will get to spend time with other kids and make new friends.

Plus, while you love your kids, it can be nice to get a break yourself. You and your partner can spend some time diving into mortgage 101 while your kids are away and discuss your upcoming home purchase by learning more about your credit score, down payment, and loan type. Being a home buyer is complicated enough without your kids interrupting you. Give yourself a chance to focus on the task at hand, and give your kids an amazing experience they’ll never forget. Plus, you and your child can write each other letters while he or she is away, which is another great skill for your kid to learn.

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Swimming Lessons

If heading to summer camp is out of the question this year, you might want to sign your son or daughter up for swimming lessons, especially if he or she is hoping to go to camp next year. Some kids learn how to swim in school, but your district might not have a pool available. Putting your kid in swimming lessons will give her or him something to do while also learning an invaluable skill. Your community pool should have lessons for the kids over the summer. They’re typically once or twice a week for the length of the summer, so it’s a perfect activity for when your child isn’t in school. He or she will gain confidence, make friends, and learn how to stay afloat. Plus, when your child does get to summer camp, he or she will have to pass a swim test to do any of the water activities. Make sure your kid knows how to swim before he or she gets to camp.

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There are plenty of free or cheap activities for your kids to do this summer. If you can’t afford the full cost of summer camp, see if there are scholarships available. Your kid will appreciate your looking into fun things for him or her to do before summer ends.

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