Kids Summer Activity Drawers

I just got a letter sent home from my son with an ABC countdown to the end if the school year.  That can’t be right?  Only 26 days left!  PANIC MODE!!!  My daughter is in special ed preschool 4 days a week for a couple hours.  My son has been at all-day, everyday kindergarten.  Needless to say I have grown accustomed to having them both out of the house.  

Now I realize that summer comes with swimming, going to the park, paying in the backyard, bubbles, running through the sprinkler, and eating popsicles…however it also comes with a lot of down time too.  My son has become very concerned lately about “what are we going to do next?” My response?  I’m not your entertainment source, you have more books and toys that you can count to play with, figure out. 

In a preemptive attempt to ward off some boredom and keep my kids somewhat in the educational mindset (and not regress too much over the summer), I have gotten some stacking plastic drawers to fill with activies.  They will have things shoved in them from books to worksheets to coloring pages to games, etc.. I’m aiming to have my son’s activities more independent and my daughter’s more 1-on-1 with me.

More about the items I’m putting in for each kid…

My son has collected over the last year or two several workbooks that are partially done.  I am cutting out the pages and placing 2-3 workbook pages in each day’s drawer.  I’m also placing a book or two in each drawer.  He is a very advanced reader and I intend on keeping it that way.  I have intentions of puzzles, games, flash cards, and his iPad Osmo games going in his drawers. I am going to try to switch it up a bit with the extras.  I also got a Star Wars coloring book and he has other coloring books from before.  I will be ripping out individual coloring pages for each day too (1 or 2 for each day).

I wanted to start this as I have a bunch of “educational” stuff that just sits around in the closet and never gets used.  My goal is to get it out and usable.  By using the drawers, I can prep for the week in a couple minutes on Sunday or even Monday morning and be ready to ward off some boredom during the week while the hubby is at work all day.  

My son is already calling these drawers his “work.”  It’s super cute because learning is cool when you’re that young.  I will also be sneaking in occassional treats or microwave popcorn or even a new library movie into the mix.  Once school is officially over, I am planning on placing a recipe occasionally in his drawers to have him help make cookies, a snack, or even a box of brownies with me. (Gotta teach them from a young age how to cook a bake!)   Like I mentioned above, I’m going to try and mix the drawers up a bit so it isn’t the same thing everyday.  I will have at least 2 worksheets and a book in every day.  The rest is negotiable based on our week and what I find hiding in our house that hasn’t been played with for awhile. 

If you are super-mom adventurous, you could plan art projects too.  I don’t think this will be an every week activity but I’m sure we will bust out the scissors and glue and make something fun occasionally. 

For my daughter’s drawers, I will be including some laminated ABC tracing pages (she is obsessed with letters), play dough activity sheets, board books to read, and other toys she doesn’t play with much unless someone is guiding her and interacting with her (dolls, magnetic dress up dolls, musical instruments like shakers and tambourines).

My daughter also has some Tiggly iPad games (yes, my kids both have an iPad Mini 2).  The are both loaded with only educational games and my son has a rule that he has to complete a sight word “set” on one of his apps before he can do anything else.  It works great to have that rule!  I highly suggest it to parents with kids learning how to read.  

I also will be finding and/or making a couple more speech-related tools for my dauggter to put in her drawers as she needs continued help in that area. 

So that’s about the gist of it.  I am excited to have these ready for the start of summer. (They will be great next winter too when it’s too cold to go outside in Minnesota and we end up watching too many movies).

Let me know if you decide to the something similar or if you gave any goods suggestions for the drawers!  

P.S.- here is a sneak peak I took on my Kindle, terrible quality.  I will get better photos up tomorrow including photos of the items in the bins.  Plus I have printed the days of the week to tape to the front, so those will be on tomorrow as well! 

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