I have been working and working and working and working and working on this calendar for weeks now, and I’m finally ready to share it. Woot. No really. Woooot!
In fact, I’m so happy I’m literally dancing around the living room.
Why? I just mapped out the bones of our summer.
Ten weeks full of summer activities for thinking, curious, and creative kids. It’s our tabletop surprises calendar, and Maddy, Owen, and Cora will totally dig it.
We’ll still start out the summer by making Summer Fun Cards so that we are sure to remember to fit in everything we love to do during the long summer months, but then we’ll rock out the #tabletopsurprises.
This year, my kids are 10, 8, and 7 years old. They’re getting older, but they still love games. They love to create. They love to play with the old standbys that we’re too busy for during the school year but that they look forward to in summer months.
They still have playdates. They still hold my hand. They still want hugs. (Most days.)
So I’m milking this for as long as I can. Though learned the hard way last summer that because they’re getting older, we’re not all on the same schedule. Where I once used preschool mornings or rest time hours for games and learning, now we’re not on as strict a schedule.
I have an early riser and I have a night owl. And I have one kiddo whose mood is dictated by the weather, by the day of the week, or by the direction of the wind. So I’ve got to be flexible.
All I know is that what really, truly worked for us last summer was Tabletop Surprises because the activities ‘fit’ into our daily schedule. The kids headed to the table when they felt like it, sometime throughout the day.
And every day was kind of like Christmas because there was a surprise Every. Single. Day.
So we’re rockin’ them again this year.
Here’s the skinny. . .
- Summer Activities for Thinking, Curious, and Creative Kids–Tabletop Surprises Calendar:
What are Tabletop Surprises? Tabletop Surprises are invitations to learn, play, create, invent, and think–on their own time.
Little fun activities just waiting for someone to come along and try ‘em out.
this year’s tabletop surprises calendar 2014 teachmama.com
How to I get the kids to actually sit down and do the activities? A few ways:
1. The activities are fun and they want to do them;
2. At any given time, on any given day, I have been known to toss a few gems into the gem jars of people who have been spotted doing the activity. Not every day, but some days.
3. I’ll join them. Kids–I truly believe–like to hang out with their parents. Especially if their parents are kinda cool or funny or at least act like they’re cool or funny. I like to hang out with my kids, so when they sit, if I can, I’ll join them.
What are the ideas and what makes them so fun?
Simple. They’re hands-on. They’re cool. They’re creative and crafty. They’re unusual. They’re familiar. They’re old and they’re new. They’re digital and battery-free. They’re indoors and outdoors.
It’s a mix, and that keeps them going. And it’s only ten weeks. That gives us one week for vacation and one week to totally pound out math packets and summer school assignments.
I’m busy. I don’t have time for this.
Yes. You. Do. I’ve got every single thing you need right here. Ten weeks. Links to resources and everything. Just print out a few things, gather supplies the night before and set it out so it’s all there when the kids wake up. They’ll do it when they’re able.
In fact, I’ve so got this covered, that if you subscribe to teachmama.com via email (only a few emails a week–full of awesome for you and your kids!) you’ll have access to every single thing you need for the entire ten weeks. Every link. Every printable. Bam.
Cool. So now what?
- Print out the calendar: tabletop surprises calendar 2014 teachmama.com
- Subscribe to teachmama.com via email.
- Download the Tabletop Surprise Resource Guide (you’ll get it when you confirm your subscription, yo!).
- Give your kids the skinny on Tabletop Surprises.
- Start learning, playing, creating, inventing, and thinking alongside your kiddos!
- And? Share your #tabletopsurprises via instagram or twitter just for fun.
- Have the summer of your dreams. Well. . .
Give me a look at this stuff.
Sure. Check out last year’s Tabletop Surprises to get an idea about what we’re doing:
- Tabletop Surprises Week One
- Tabletop Surprises Week Two
- Tabletop Surprises Week Three
- Tabletop Surprises Week Four
Or check out some fun ideas from a our Smart Summer Challenge a few summers back.
Here’s to an awesome summer filled with fun learning and memory-making!