This summer has been a real scorcher, no matter where you live.

While a quick dip in the pool may sound like the only way to shake the heat, there are many other fun and exciting ways to cool the kids off this summer. So parents without pools rejoice — here are some creative ways to keep your kids chill this summer.

Family Daycation to the Water Park

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Summer break is the best time to plan family outings, and a water park is a great place to visit. All water parks are different, so if you have multiple ones in your area, be sure to try them all. This is an activity everyone can enjoy, even the parents. You can even include some of your child’s friends and their parents for maximum fun. Many parks will run coupons and discounts during the summer, so be sure to check them out and take advantage of good deals.

DIY to Chill and Occupy

Going out is not always an option, especially for parents working from home. You may need activities that cool the kids down and keep them occupied while you are busy elsewhere. Here are a few ideas that can keep them busy and cool, too.

Turn Cooling Off into Dress-Up Time

Kids love to dress up, so why not combine it with cooling down? Set your kids up by creating a summer sponge lei.Just get some colorful sponges and yarn from the discount store and get creative! Here are the steps:

  • Cut the sponges into the shapes you want
  • Use a yarn needle to poke a hole in the sponge
  • Thread the yard through the sponge
  • Tie up the necklace when complete
  • Fill a bucket with water
  • Let the kids soak the necklaces and enjoy

Turn Snack Time into Ice Time

Ditch the candy and head to the freezer instead! Frozen fruit is a great summer treat for kids that keeps them cool and provides a healthier alternative to candy and soda. You can even toss them in the blender to make quick-frozen slushies – no more running after the ice cream truck!

Turn Fans into Fun

Sometimes it feels like that fan just doesn’t keep you cool. A neat hack with fans is to add some water or ice into the air. The water will evaporate and cause the temperature to drop a bit. Kids can enjoy this, too, by cutting up some colorful rags, tying them to a fan, and wetting them down. Just be careful to always practice safe fan etiquette and not get water on the plug!

Water Balloon Fight

There is no doubt about it — kids love to play outside in the summer. Nothing screams summer louder than a water balloon fight. Water balloons are inexpensive, and this is a great activity to get the kids outside for a few minutes, especially if you have work to tend to!

Just make sure the kids know the proper etiquette in water balloon fights: No balloons to the faces, and listen for other kids who say “stop” if they get overwhelmed in the game. This should cool off, not fire up, the kids.

Buy or Make a Sprinkler

While this may seem like an obvious choice, it is often overlooked. Sprinklers are inexpensive and widely available in the summer. Kids love jumping through them or chasing the waves. Take it a step further and turn your backyard into a water park with some DIY sprinklers using pool noodles and PVC pipes.

Turn Hot Potato into Cool Potato

The simple game of hot potato can be modified to fit in with the heat. Just use a wet sponge as your “potato” and the kids can toss it back and forth while also staying cool. You can even set up relays and races to pass the sponge around!

Turn Chores into a Game

Heatwaves can be devastating to your garden, and watering it can be a chore. Combine cooling the kids off with doing your yard work by turning it into a fun game. Kids can pretend to be part of the lawn while you “water” them. Or you can turn it into a tag game, where the water is always “it.”

Remember: Summer Doesn’t Last Forever

It seems like before we know it, we will be complaining about how cold it is instead of how hot it was. Summer break is a time for kids to make memories and wind down before the school year starts back up. Balancing work with home can be difficult but not impossible for a busy parent. Some of these summer break ideas can be done right from home and are cost-efficient. Whatever you choose, just remember how much your kids will love it.

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