Learning Ideas

Summer Boredom Busters – Water Play and Washing Dishes

summer boredom busters

Do you every feel like you’re speaking a foreign language?  That’s been me this week, my kids have either really perfected the art of selective hearing or we are not speaking the same language. Before baby Q arrived, M and J started sharing a room and overall it went amazingly well.  J loves his bed and has slept in it without complaint from day 1 and they both love sharing a room.  The only downside is instead of going right to sleep at night, they now stay up talking, singing, telling jokes and anything else you can think of.  It’s adorable until it lasts 1-2 hours every night and leads everyone to be over tired in the morning.  I’m pretty sure their newfound selective hearing has something to do with this constant state of being over tired, which has only been made worse by the exhaustion of summer.

That’s why these summer boredom buster ideas have been key.  Since I’m also running on less than normal sleep these days, I’ve been trying my best not to lose my cool with the kids when they don’t seem to be listening.  Instead, I’ve tried to have an activity ready that will get them excited.

If you missed last week’s post, be sure to check out week 1 – easy bird feeders your kids will love to make.  Make sure you also follow me on Facebook or by email to get each week’s new activity.  I’ll be posting one a week throughout the summer.

This week’s activity has quickly become a favorite of my kids – they have done it at least half a dozen times already and it’s only the beginning of July!  If you’re kids love playing in water, this activity is for you!  You can adapt it using whatever you have on hand.


There’s something about water that entertains my kids longer than almost any other activity.  So lately I’ve been setting up this washing station on our back deck for them to play in.  Originally, it was just water in the bucket but when M saw it she said “I really wish we could use real soap to wash the dishes!” and I thought why not? The look of surprise and excitement when I dumped in some dish soap was priceless.

To set up your own washing station, simply fill a bucket or tub with water.  Throw in some plastic dishes (nothing breakable!) and give your kids a sponge.  That’s it.  From there, it will take on a mind of its own as your kids wash dishes, wash the deck, wash themselves, wash each other… you get the idea.


Our washing station has entertained the kids for over an hour on more than one occasion.  I was inside with the baby one afternoon when I heard hysterical laughter coming from our deck.  Much to my surprise, I found both M and J have gotten in the bucket of water!  I loved seeing how much fun they were having together.



Don’t put too much though into setting this one up.  Stick to the basics and let your kids imagination do the rest.  The possibilities are endless…

Don’t forget to join me each Monday throughout the summer for more fun ideas to do with your little ones.

Week 1: Easy Bird Feeders

Week 2: Water Play – Pretend Dish Washing

Week 3: Chalk Towns

Week 4: Ice Excavations

Week 5: Cotton Ball Painting

Week 6: Homemade Popsicles

Week 7: Giant Bubbles

Week 8: Water Play – Washing the Car

Week 9: Sun melted Crayons

Week 10: Obstacle Course


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