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June 26, 2020

Save Your Socially-Distant Summer with Themed Weeks

Summer is finally here! Even though we can't travel as freely as we used to due to social distancing, that doesn't mean we can't still make some summer memories! In fact, I have a fun, new activity that will help keep all of the kiddos entertained this summer: themed weeks!

Summer is finally here — but unfortunately, we're still dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though we can't travel as freely as we used to due to social distancing, that doesn't mean we can't still make some summer memories! In fact, I have a fun, new activity that will help keep all of the kiddos entertained this summer: themed weeks!

As the name suggests, themed weeks refer to weeklong "festivals" where all the kiddos in the home participate in activities centered around one theme. Although it may sound simple, you'd be surprised how much entertainment these games could add to your weekly routine. Your little ones won't have any time to be bored as they plan their exciting adventures!

If you’re wondering how to get started with a fun idea like this, don’t worry — I got you!

For A Fab First Themed Week, Keep These Tips In Mind

Honestly, there's only one rule when it comes to planning a proper themed week: stick with one theme for seven days. Whatever you choose to do during your week is totally up to your family, so be sure everybody is (at least somewhat) interested in the topic!

For the best results, you should ensure everyone has an opportunity to plan one of your themed adventures. By giving everyone in the family a chance to create their week, you'll keep everyone engaged in this fun project the entire summer.

To help boost your child’s love of literacy, I also suggest tailoring a few of your themed weeks to whatever books you're reading together. While we’re on the subject of babies and books, be sure to check out my previous blog post on this critical topic.    

So, What Does A Themed Week Look Like? – A Sample Itinerary

To help you better understand what a themed week looks like, let's run through a sample itinerary. Keep in mind, all of these examples below are just basic sketches. Feel free to copy or change these plans to suit your family's preferences.

Sample Week Theme: Underwater Adventures

If you can't travel to visit the beach this summer, why not bring some underwater life into your home? In this themed week, your little ones will learn ALL about the marvelous mysteries of marine life.

Day 1: Make A "Fishy" Graham Cracker Masterpiece  

There's no need to dive into the deep end on your first day! Instead, I recommend starting your "under the sea" week with a simple (and tasty) art project.

Help your kids create underwater scenes using a blue-dyed buttercream and goldfish on Graham crackers. For extra fun, arrange a few white, green, and red sprinkles to add bubbles, seaweed, and crabs to your underwater scene.

For a thorough guide on how to make these seaworthy Graham crackers, check out this excellent blog post.

Day 2: Hang Gorgeous Jellyfish From Your Ceiling

Jellyfish sure look pretty, but boy could they sting! Did you know that jellyfish zap at least 150 million people every year? Ouch! Considering how much of a problem this is, it's a good idea to introduce your kids to the dangers of these critters with an at-home art project.

Grab a few paper plates and cut them in half with scissors. Next, hand the plate pieces to your children and encourage them to color with crayons, colored pencils, or paint.  

Once your petite Picassos are satisfied with their jellyfish, cut a few strips of crepe paper and glue them to the plate's back. Lastly, puncture a hole in the top of your jellyfish and hang them around your home.    

While you're assisting your kids, be sure to sprinkle in a few fun facts about jellyfish and teach them how to avoid getting "stung" on your next beach vacation.

Day 3: Create "Sunset Silhouettes" With Coffee Filters

Coffee filters aren't just great for making a cup of java, they could also be used for many masterful works of art. Indeed, you could easily make an undersea silhouette with just three objects: coffee filters, watercolors, and dark-colored paper.  

First, give your child a coffee filter and let them paint with watercolors. When your kids are satisfied with their background designs, let the filters dry for a few hours.

In the meantime, print out a few ocean animal silhouettes on blue or black paper. Have your little ones carefully cut the pattern with safety scissors. Finally, glue the animal to the center of the dried coffee filter, and you're done!  

You can find a full sheet of different animals on this handy file.

Day 4: Make Some Squishy Ocean Slime

Day four is all about slime time — ocean slime, that is. To make this sticky substance, combine ½ cup of water with a five-ounce container of clear glue. Next, mix in a few drops of blue food coloring and ½ teaspoon of baking soda. Lastly, add one tablespoon of saline solution to create the "slimy" texture.

Although your slime is technically finished at this point, you could add some glitter, fishbowl beads, and plastic fish to make your goop extra fun.

Day 5: Safely Swim With Some Sharks  

Sharks may seem scary, but they're often misunderstood. In fact, sharks play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy underwater ecosystem!

Why not take a day in your undersea adventure to better appreciate this sharp-toothed fish? An easy way to teach kids about sharks is to print out one of these worksheets and have them color the cute figure.    

Day 6: Watch The Waves In A Bottle

Few sounds are as soothing as ocean waves crashing on the shore. Interestingly, there is a way you could simulate this relaxing experience with a few simple items.

For this project, you'll need a mason jar, vegetable oil, water, and blue food coloring. Once you have everything assembled, fill your mason jar halfway with water and a few drops of blue food coloring. Next, fill the rest of the jar with vegetable oil.

After you tighten the lid, feel free to turn the jar on its side and watch the beautiful waves crashing side-to-side!      

Day 7: Create A Colorful “Celery Fish”

Who needs a paintbrush when you've got a stalk of celery? Yes, it might sound crazy, but you'll be amazed at the colorful creations your kids can make with a few stalks of celery, a fish template, and paint.

First, cut off a few stumps of celery and place each by different colors of paint. Next, have your kids dip each designated celery stump in paint and stamp it onto this fish template to create gills. As a finishing touch, consider gluing a few googly eyes to your new fishy friend.

June 26, 2020



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