School’s Out for Summer: Fun and Creative Ways to Celebrate with Your Kids!

Ah, summer! The time of year when the school bell rings for the last time, homework becomes a distant memory, and the kids are ready to embrace the freedom of the great outdoors.

As a parent, you might be wondering how to celebrate the end of the school year and kick off summer vacation with a bang. Well, fear not, because I’ve got a list of fun, creative, and slightly humorous ideas to help you and your kids start summer on the right foot!

1. Host a “School’s Out” Party

Why not throw a party to celebrate the end of the school year? Invite your kids’ friends over for a backyard bash complete with music, games, and plenty of snacks. Set up a DIY ice cream bar, where kids can create their own sundaes with all their favorite toppings. Don’t forget to play some classic summer tunes—bonus points if you can get the kids to dance to “School’s Out” by Alice Cooper.

For the past few years, we would host a classic “School’s Out” party and the kids loved it. To make it easier, you want to have it outside. Cleaning just becomes that much easier when it’s outside. Unfortunately for us, this year I don’t think it’s in the cards for us—no yard…yet!

2. Create a Summer Bucket List

Sit down with your kids and brainstorm a list of fun activities to do over the summer. From visiting the local zoo to having a water balloon fight, the possibilities are endless. Write each idea on a piece of paper and put them in a jar. Whenever your kids say, “I’m bored,” simply pull an idea from the jar and get ready for some spontaneous summer fun!

We love doing these. We even do this for a family bucket list of things to do, but this summer list is just things that we will do during the summer. If you need help, here is a fun Bucket List that I sent out to all my newsletter subscribers.

3. Take a Day Trip

Nothing says “school’s out” like a spontaneous day trip! Pack up the car with snacks, sunscreen, and plenty of water, and head to a nearby beach, park, or amusement park. Enjoy a day of adventure and exploration, and don’t forget to take lots of pictures to capture those priceless memories.

We love a good day trip. You will frequently see us going to Spring City (Emily’s family has a place there), but this year we have been thinking of some other day trip places we want to see.

4. Have a Backyard Campout

Who says you need to go far to have an adventure? Set up a tent in the backyard, gather some sleeping bags, and get ready for a night under the stars. Roast marshmallows, tell spooky stories, and enjoy the thrill of camping without ever leaving home. Just be prepared for multiple bathroom trips!

I think our kids have talked about our backyard campout we did years ago every single summer since. The nice thing is, since we did it we purchased our own camping gear. Maybe this will be the year that we do it again. But first—grass!!

5. Organize a Family Olympics

Get the whole family involved in some friendly competition by organizing your very own Family Olympics. Create a series of fun events, such as sack races, tug-of-war, and a water balloon toss. Award medals to the winners and celebrate with a victory BBQ. Remember, it’s all about having fun, so let the kids win a few events!

I don’t know if you know this about me, but I absolutely love the Olympics. I may not be a huge sports person, but the Olympics is my favorite thing that I will wake up in the middle of the night just to watch the most random events happening live. For me, a family Olympics sounds like the best time ever.

6. DIY Water Park

Turn your backyard into a mini water park with a few simple supplies. Set up a slip ‘n’ slide, fill up a kiddie pool, and have a water gun battle. For an extra touch, make some homemade popsicles to enjoy after all the splashing around. Trust me, your kids will talk about this for years to come.

Really though, I would much rather have a homemade water park than going to one. At least I know there won’t be any diapers in the pool (true story, went and there was a diaper in the wave pool).

7. Movie Marathon Madness

When the summer heat becomes too much to handle, retreat indoors for a movie marathon. Let your kids pick their favorite films and create a cozy movie-watching area with blankets and pillows. Pop some popcorn, make some delicious snacks, and enjoy a lazy afternoon of cinematic bliss.

I don’t know if you read this already, but we have quite the list of movies to watch this summer.

8. Get Crafty

Unleash your kids’ creativity with a summer-themed arts and crafts day. Gather supplies like colored paper, markers, glue, and glitter, and let your kids create their own masterpieces. You can make summer-themed decorations, like paper suns and seashells, to hang around the house. Just be prepared for a glitter explosion!

The nice thing for us is that we have a craft room/sewing room that the kids enjoy using all the time. We even have a collection of favorite craft items. Here is a list of favorite art and crafting supplies we have been getting for years.

9. Plan a Reading Challenge

Encourage your kids to keep their brains active over the summer with a fun reading challenge. Create a list of books suitable for their age group and set a goal for how many they should read by the end of summer. Reward their efforts with a special treat, like a trip to the ice cream parlor or a new book of their choice.

Like the movie list, we have a collection of books to read this summer. Mostly that we can read together, but what if we did our own family book club? That could be a fun thing to do.

10. Bake-Off Bonanza

Get the kids in the kitchen and have a summer-themed bake-off. Choose some fun recipes, like cupcakes, cookies, or even homemade lemonade, and let the kids take charge. Have a taste test and award prizes for the most creative, most delicious, and most likely to make a mess!

Cookies are always a hit around here to make. But my kids are always asking to make my bread together. Maybe we should try that and see how it goes.

So there you have it—ten fun and creative ways to celebrate the end of the school year and kick off summer vacation. Whether you’re hosting a party, embarking on an adventure, or simply enjoying some quality time at home, these ideas are sure to make this summer one to remember. Happy summer, everyone!