It's definitely summer around here, and they also need ways to play outside and get their big body play, but without getting overheated. I have misters that we turn on while we're outside, and they help a lot, but we've also had water and bubble play several days, and the kids love it!
As much fun as we can have in my backyard, I think it is important to play in other playgrounds sometimes. Each playground offers different ways to move our bodies, different combinations of activities, and fun new elements to explore. I took two different groups of kiddos to Stovall Park to play this week. There are climbing elements that use lots of upper body strength, spinning elements, and some fun places to pretend.
I mentioned last week that the Arlington Public Libraries have a lot of free shows for kids this summer, both at libraries and at recreation centers around town. We're taking advantage of some of the performances, and checking out the rec center playgrounds while we're there. If you are in the area, you can check out the schedule of events at http://www.arlingtonlibrary.org/kids-calendar.
Our backyard play area is nice and shady, and with ice water, misters, and a little water play, it's still nice to get out at the house too.
So how do we keep from getting bored at the house? By rotating which toys are available. This week I dug out the light bright, and the little pet shop toys, as well as kid connex, and those were instant favorites.
Outside, I got out some high dollar toys... by which I mean recycled loose parts for the kids to play with. You've surely heard people talk about how children prefer the box to the new toy sometimes... I take that theory and go with it pretty regularly. These cardboard tubes were in the center of carpet rolls, slated for the trash or recycling bin... but I rescued them. Add balls (and pine cones), and you have serious kid entertainment.
We added plastic tubing and recycled bottle funnels to the water play table, and the children came up with quite the creation.