Some people have summers full of traveling around the world, lounging by the pool, and spending as much time as possible with friends. My summer is full of kids.
Babysitting can be one of the most rewarding jobs you'll ever have. But, like any job, it's important to put in effort if you want to get anything out of it. While it would be a lot easier to just stick the kids in front of a TV or take them to the pool and let the lifeguards watch them, it's SO much more fun to plan activities and fill every day with something different. So here are some super easy ideas to help you get started!
1. Spa day
Who doesn't need some pampering every once in a while? Break out the nail polish, face masks, and cucumbers and have a little spa day! There aren't too many relaxing activities that kids would think are fun, but this is one of them. Bonus tip: Make a homemade face mask with the kids as a fun pre-spa day activity!
2. Bake and decorate
This is super easy to do and you get a yummy treat at the end! My favorite way to do this is to bake plain sugar cookies and let my girls go crazy with icing and sprinkles. Most kids want desserts and treats every day so this is a great way to give them what they want AND keep them entertained for a couple of hours!
3. Anything with paint
Paint... a babysitters nightmare. While the potential messes may girl me anxiety, it's still one of my girls favorite things to do. I usually just buy canvases and let them create as they wish but there is a world full of paint related activities. Messy twister, squirt gun painting, water balloon painting... whatever you do just make sure you're prepared to get messy!
4. Water balloon fight
If you babysit multiple kids, you know that fights are inevitable. So, switch things up and tell them to fight it out with balloons! This activity is so cheap and SO fun. And you aren't just limited to fights, you can use the water balloons for so many different activities such as tag or baseball!
5. Movie day
Rainy days call for staying indoors, but that doesn't mean it has to be boring! Pop some popcorn, build a fort, and turn on their favorite movies for a fun filled day. My girls love to pitch a tent in their basement and break out their sleeping bags to pretend like we're all camping out while they watch the movies. You could even make fake tickets to pretend like you all are at a theater!
6. Scavenger hunt
This is a great idea for the more adventurous kids, and it allows us babysitters to decide just how adventurous they get to be. Whether you just make a list of items, colors, animals, or anything else for them to find, they're going to love running around and checking things off the scavenger list!
7. Make something fun
This one is kind of vague, but that's because there really are a million fun crafts to get into! I use Pinterest a lot to find unique crafts that I normally couldn't have thought of on my own. A few crafts that are on my list for this summer are light catchers, dream catchers, and bath bombs!
8. Lemonade stand
OK, I know this is a bit cheesy but it is SUCH a great idea. Not only is it fun to sell the lemonade, but you get to craft up little signs for your stand, make the lemonade, and your kids get to make a little cash at the end to buy whatever they want. This is especially good for kids around the 3rd and 4th grade who are learning about money! You can have them count the profits and make sure they're getting the right amount from customers.
This isn't just a fun activity -- it's also a great way for your kids to remember everything that they've done throughout the summer. I usually take a few pictures every week and then we have "Scrapbook Mondays" where they get to pick out a paper design and stickers and get to work. At the end of the summer when they put all of their pages together, they're going to be so excited to show their parents all of the fun things that they got to do with you!