Our Summer Challenge 2020
Last year, Rory and I wrote a Bucket List of all the things we would like to do during the summer holidays. Some were big trips such as a visit to the theatre and others were much smaller things. We enjoyed doing it so much that we decided to write another one for 2020. This year, we have had to make some small differences because of what is happening in the world. We decided that we wouldn’t include any trips to places. I’m sure we will have some days out but we’ll plan those as attractions around us re open. We’ve designed our bucket list to be things that we can either achieve at home or in places where we can go for walks freely. Some of the activities we have kept from last year because we really enjoyed doing them but there are lots of new activities for this year too. If you fancy having a go at our Summer Challenge, there’s a Free Printable Version at the bottom of the post.
- Go For A Nature Walk
Rory loves playing Pokémon Go so this one is a good activity for everyone. We all get some fresh air, Rory gets to catch a few Pokémon and we can appreciate the natural world around us. We are really fortunate that we have the Singleton Environment Centre and Singleton Lake in easy walking distance from our house.
- Play A Board Game Over Zoom
During Lockdown, Rory has discovered how fun it is to play board games over Zoom. He has been playing Monopoly with Grandad and Chess with Uncle Ash. You need to make sure that players at both ends of the Zoom call have a game board in front of them Both players need to move each others pieces on their own boards. With chess, we found it easiest to set up a grid system so it was easier to explain which pieces were moving where e.g. A7 to A5
- Make An Extravagant Breakfast
Last year, one of our activities was to go out for breakfast. Currently, our favourite cafe to visit for breakfast is still closed. Fingers crossed they will open soon. Rory and I decided that we could still have a Breakfast Treat but we could create it ourselves. I expect we will do this a few times as Rory and his younger brother Rowan love a Full English Breakfast but they also love American Pancakes with Bacon and Maple Syrup!
- Do Some Messy Play
This one was really put in for Rowan but Rory loves joining in with some messy play too. Playing with Slime and Gelli is always popular but I’m sure we’ll investigate some other messy play options too.
- Visit A Friend or Relative You Haven’t Seen For A While
This is one we have carried over from last year. We have quite a few friends and family in other parts of the country and the summer holidays is usually our catch up time. However, with everything that has happened in the last few months, we may find that this year those friends and relatives may be a little closer to home!
- Do A Scavenger Hunt
During Lockdown, I have written a whole host of Scavenger Hunts to keep us entertained. Some perfect for rainy days such as the Indoor Scavenger Hunt, Science Scavenger Hunt and Fairy Tale Scavenger Hunt and others which can be done outside when the sun is shining such as the Nature Scavenger Hunt and Seaside Scavenger Hunt. We love a Scavenger Hunt because every time we do them, we find different items to match the clues!
- Do Some Baking
I absolutely love baking and so I hope we’ll do lots of this over the summer so I can pass my love of baking on to the boys. Rowan is very on making jam tarts but that’s mainly because he likes the noise the food processor makes when he makes the pastry. Rory is a huge fan of creating breads with our breadmaker so I think we’ll have to try out some new bread flavours over the summer. Obviously, we’ll have to bake a few cakes and biscuits too…
- Get Creative
This is definitely an activity which can cover plenty of bases! Both boys love to get the craft box out so I’m sure they will create some amazing masterpieces over the summer.
- Do A Random Act of Kindness
During October, we usually join in with a local initiative, Thousand Hours – a Kindness Revolution. The aim is to do one act of kindness a day and across our town the time will accumulate to make a Thousand Hours of kindness. Usually, the total is more like several thousand hours of kindness! I like to remind the boys that kind acts aren’t just limited to October and we should be doing them throughout the whole year!
- Make Homemade Lemonade
Last week, we got a knock on our door. It was the little girl who lives next door to tell us that she had set up a lemonade stand outside in the road and would we like to buy a cup for 20p. Obviously, we all went out and enjoyed a socially distant glass of lemonade with our neighbours. The boys liked it so much that we are going to find a recipe to make some for ourselves.
- Go For A Long Bike Ride
This activity should really have two parts. For Rowan, it would be I will learn to pedal my bike. Rory got a new bike for Christmas and has been going on lots of bike rides with Grandad. They usually cycle for about ten miles. I’m sure this will be another activity which will be completed several times during the summer.
- Throw Pebbles In The Sea
Rowan loves visiting the beach and the sea is his favourite part. He doesn’t mind at all that it is freezing cold. He still likes to paddle and he loves throwing in pebbles to see which ones make the biggest splash!
- Do An Online Escape Room
I haven’t actually visited a real Escape Room before. During Lockdown, we tried an online version with some friends and it was fantastic. We told Rory all about it and he was very keen to give it a go. His aunt gathered together his cousins via Zoom and they solved the mystery of a stolen diamond! They had such an awesome time that Rory is very keen to do another one.
- Try A Food You Haven’t Tasted Before
This one originally made it’s way onto the list because Rory was quite a picky eater and so it was a challenge to encourage him to try new things. Now both boys are absolute gannets and will eat anything! However, it is still fun to try new foods so we wanted to keep this in our Summer Challenge.
- Make A Nature Collage
This activity would go very nicely with going for a nature walk. During the walk you just to to make a collection of twigs, leaves, blossom, feathers etc and then have a go at turning them into a picture.
- Have A Movie Night With Special Snacks And Drinks
Rory had to celebrate his birthday in Lockdown so to make it special we had a Harry Potter Movie Night. We decorated our front room with balloons and Movie Night bunting. I also set up a Concessions Stand with Rory’s favourite drink and a range of sweets and popcorn. We also had an interval in the film for the Ice Cream Lady to appear with funky cornets, flakes, wafers, sauces and of course ice cream. Rory enjoyed it so much he asked if we could do something similar in the summer.
- Write A Letter
This was an addition from Mummy so that Rory doesn’t forget what a pencil is over the summer! We are hoping that this will be a fun way to do a little bit of writing during the holidays.
- Go On A Mini Beast Hunt
This is another activity which was on our Summer Challenge last year but again it was so popular that both boys wanted to include it again this year. It is always fun to go out with a magnifying glass and see what bugs can be found!
- Have A Space Day
Rory’s ambition is to be an astronaut when he grows up. He loves all things to do with space and is very keen to follow in Tim Peake’s footsteps and visit the International Space Station or to walk on Mars. We’ve had a Space Day before which include Space themed yoga, games and crafts.
- Eat Chips On The Beach
This is one of our favourite treats as a family and thankfully the fish and chip shops along our local seafront are beginning to reopen so we can enjoy this treat again.
- Have A Pyjama Day
As if we haven’t spent enough time in our pyjamas over lockdown, however Rory wanted to ensure that this was included in the challenge. After all, who doesn’t love a lazy day every now and then.
- Read A Book By An Author You Haven’t Read Before
The Black Lives Matter campaign has really made us think about the kind of books we are reading. Looking through some of Rory’s favourite authors, they all feature stories about white heroes. I felt it was really important to diversify Rory’s reading. Whilst he will still be enjoying JK Rowling, David Walliams and Andrew Clover stories, we will also be encouraging him to read some new authors. We are kicking off with Rita Williams-Garcia’s novel Clayton Byrd Goes Underground!
- Have Fun With Water
Summer isn’t summer without playing in the paddling pool, having a water fight, throwing water balloons and paddling in the sea!
- Do Some Science Experiments
We have been doing a whole variety of science experiments recently including having fun with vinegar to make a bouncy egg and launching a rocket in the garden. This has really whet the boys’ appetites for science and are extremely keen to do more.
- Have a Picnic
Another classic summer activity. This one was suggested by Rowan who loves a picnic whether its sitting on a blanket in the garden or somewhere further afield.
- Build A Fort
In April, Rory took part in the World’s Largest Scout Camp. He set up a tent in the playroom and slept in it over night. Rory and Rowan are very keen to repeat this adventure but this time building a fort of their own.
- Go Cloud Gazing
We really love star gazing but during the summer months, you have to stay up pretty late in order for it to be dark enough. This summer, we thought we’d enjoy a bit of cloud gazing. We can lie in the garden and chat about what shapes we think the clouds are.
- Do A Litter Pick
If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you will know that Rory is extremely keen to ensure that we reduce the effects of litter, especially plastic. Sadly, whenever we go for walks we always find plenty of litter so we’ll grabbing some litter pickers and a bag and picking up as much as we can. If you fancy going on a litter pick, The Fish With A Wish is a great story to introduce why we should look after our planet.
- Play A Game Of Rounders
As schools have been closed, Rory hasn’t had a chance to play rounders with his classmates this year so we decided we’d have to visit a field and play as a family instead.
- Make A Souvenir Of The Summer
Our final activity is a sentimental one. I’m not sure what form this will take but I cannot wait to see what souvenir Rory creates to remember all his summer memories!
If you fancy having a go at our Summer Challenge, there is printable version here:
Our Summer Challenge Printable 2020
I’ve designed it so you can tick off the activities as you complete them.
If you have a go at any of our Summer Challenge Activities, I’d love to see.
Do tag me in your photographs on social media.
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