DIY Projects

Outdoor DIY Projects for You and Your Kids

kid summer boredom

Image Via Flickr by John Morgan

From the pretty to the practical, there are enough DIY projects to keep your whole family entertained every day of the summer. Whether you want to find something funky, fun or fashionable, there’s an idea to match every taste. If your children want to channel their inner Picasso or Renzo Piano, encourage them to do so with these interesting projects for kids. Just be forewarned: you may want to have all of the supplies out of storage and on hand as soon as possible, to thwart the inevitable “I’m so bored” whines synonymous with the season!

Plastic Bottle Water Sprinkler

Everyone can appreciate a sprinkler on the lawn during a hot summer day. Fortunately this is a very simple thing to create with items you likely already have around the house, and with just a few minutes of prep time your kids can get instant relief from the weather – and have a blast doing it!

This is all you will need to get started:

  • Empty plastic 2-liter bottle (in good shape)
  • Waterproof tape
  • A working garden hose (that you don't mind taping up)
  • Power drill

First, use the drill to place holes in the plastic bottle. You will want one side of the bottle to remain hole-free, as this side will be placed on the ground. The rest of the bottle can have as many holes as you like, and point in all different directions to maximize water dispersal. Don't put the holes too close together, to retain the integrity of the bottle.

Next, attach the hose to the opening of the bottle and seal it tightly with waterproof tape. It is important to use plenty of tape on both the hose and the bottle, so your sprinkler will stay together as the water pressure builds.

After that, you just have to put your new sprinkler in the desired spot on your lawn and crank up the water! Your kids will have so much fun running and splashing around that you just might have to join them.

Fairy Lights

This project scores high on the cool factor and can help involve your kids in your summer patio decoration activities. Made from repurposed jars, it glows in the dark and makes an amazing decoration inside the house or out. First, gather your supplies:

  • Glass jar (mason jars are one option)
  • Glow in the dark paint
  • Paintbrushes
  • Paper or old cardboard (as a platform to avoid a mess)
  • Regular glue
  • Glitter

Squirt some of the paint onto the paper or cardboard. Dip the brush into the paint and dot the bottom of the jar (inside only) with paint, leaving minimal space untouched. Continue dotting the inside of the jar all over with the paint colors chosen. For a more interesting appearance, make smaller dots clustered together rather than large dots further apart. Add a layer of glue on the inside of the lid and sprinkle with a thin layer of glitter. Set out in the sun to dry for at least a half hour.

Paper Kites

Very few kids (or adults) don’t love the feeling of running in the breeze, hand clutching a string, with a beautiful kite flying overhead. Rather than spend enormous amounts of money on store-bought creations, enjoy making your own. These crafts for kids are incredibly easy; for older tweens and teens, consider using different material and more complicated directions.

  • 8.5″ x 11″ card stock paper
  • A wooden skewer or straight drinking straw
  • Kite string
  • Ribbon
  • Scissors
  • Tape

Fold the piece of paper in half length-wise. Draw a line from the top left corner to the bottom right corner. Fold the top layer of paper along that line. Flip the paper over and do the same with the other side, matching the two sides together. Flip the paper over and tape along the middle seam.

Tape a skewer along the top points of the paper to form a horizontal line. Flip the kite over again and straighten the “spine” of the paper. Use tape to reinforce both sides about a half an inch from the edge. Make a hole in this spot and tie the kite string through this hole. Create a tail using the ribbon and tape it to the end of the paper. These kites aren’t particularly sturdy, so only use in mild weather.

Any of these craft projects for kids is sure to be fun. Even if things go slightly awry, remember to enjoy the process!

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