Every summer our family makes a point to be outside as much as humanly possible. We love the long days and warmer temperatures that allow for us to spend a lot of time together in the great outdoors. Another thing my husband and I love about the summer is the ability to focus on one another a bit more as our homeschool slows down allowing more time to have fun together!
Of course with the extra time comes the temptation for each of us to spend more time on one of our iDevices. I know I have been guilty at times of sitting down to read my Kindle and not resurfacing for hours. While this serves a purpose at times and is a fun way to occupy our time, we strive to have mostly screen-free days during the summer.
5 Screen-Free Summer Family Activities
1. Hands-On Family Devotional Time
We love family devotional time. We love it so much that we began to take our favorite family devotionals and make a day of fun out of them. For instance our family Bible study guide Learning to Speak Life: Fruit of the Spirit, we dedicate a full day doing things that directly relate to each fruit of the spirit. We have been doing this now for 3 summers and it has given our children wonderful insight into serving God's people as well as the character of Christ as well! And the ideas are endless!
2. Summer Cook-Off
This is a favorite in our family! This is where we plan several different cooking challenges by category (ie: bread making, grilling, desserts, etc). Then we set up different days throughout the summer where we have a cook-off competition of sorts. We get a lot of recipe inspiration from our Summer Survival Calendar. This is all in fun and the entire family enjoys it! Now that our youngest is 7, we can step up the competition a little bit. But it was fun even when the kids were toddlers!
3. Ice Cream Making Workshop
This is a fun day we plan where we go and get all the ingredients for our favorite ice cream flavors. We usually leave first thing in the morning to allow the time to grab all of the special things we need for each flavor (and for us that means 5 different flavors). Then we whip up our favorite ice cream recipes in our ice cream maker. Once all 5 recipes are finished (it takes a while) we then have an ice cream bar with our favorite toppings and garnishes to share. This is a huge hit in our home!
4. Annual Kercheval Family Summer Olympics
Now this one is fun. We started the Kercheval Family Summer Olympics back in 2003 and they just keep getting better and better! Our first year our first-born child was only 2-years-old so we did a 3-event set up: running through a baby pool, 20-yard dash, and a shot-put (using a whiffle ball). In the last 13 years we have gained 2 more competitors and a plethora of events. Our current line up for the 2016 Kercheval Family Summer Olympics consists of 10 events over 2 days. Let's just say that mom and dad may need some prayers for this one! Ha!
5. Summer Water Fun
We make it a point to be in the water as much as possible each summer. We love to go to the beach, local water parks, boating, water-skiing, jet-skiing, paddle-boarding, knee-boarding, and swimming. We also have fun playing with water balloons and slip and slides in our own backyard, too! We look forward to spending as many days as possible in the water and it is great exercise, too!
While these activities are our family traditions, we also were intentional that it would lead to less screen time. If you want even more screen-free ideas you can see this post:
5 Suggestions for the Unplugged Family: How & Why.
Here's to more screen-free time this summer!