Alhamdulillah summer has begun! Unfotunately one of my children, ruptured his ear drum. So this summer, we have to come up with exciting activities that do not include water slides, pools and squirt guns. Here are some of our ideas and we hope you will join in with more of your brilliant thoughts.
InshaAllah, once a week I am planning to invite some of my children’s classmates to enjoy one hour of fun science experiments followed by an hour of outdoor play in our yard. InshaAllah this will be from 6:00 to 8:00pm. For the kids who are Muslim, I will invite them to stay for Maghrib salah and have a short Islamic reminder. I plan to keep the food simple; chilled water bottles and a bowl of pretzels. We have two great books with science experiments using common household items. InshaAllah my kids will prepare a bit in advance by choosing the experiment and writing the key concepts on poster board. At science club, once the kids perform the experiment and learn the key concepts, I plan to make a short video of them describing the lessons learned. Insha’Allah it will be a fun summer keepsake!
Here are two great books that work for us…
1. DK Series: Science Rocks!
2. Gross Science: 25 experiments for the Disgusting Side of Science, Paul Beck, Scholastic
I suggest you provide a large mess tray. Right now my kitchen counter is covered in water, oil and molasses!
Usually in the summers, I do a short Islamic reminder after salatul Dhuhr. If you work during the day, after Asr or before Magrib are also good. It’s a nice calm time of the day. Often it’s a hadith, aqeeda concept, or short story. This year inshaAllah, I plan to do the lessons from the Sahaba. After each session we will talk about the positive character traits of that sahaba and discuss how we can work towards good character. Also, inshaAllah I hope to ask the children to tell the story at Islamic summer school which will occur for a few hours twice a week.
We like the series “Companions of the Prophet” by Abdul Wahid Hamid.
Ramadaan and the Night Skies:InshaAllah this year, as we prepare for Ramadaan, I plan to visit our local planetarium and see what they have to offer. Fortunately, my children are now at an age where they can stay up late enough to attend evening viewings at the observatory. Maybe we’ll choose our favorite planet or star to write a creative story. Also, inshaAllah we will discuss Quranic ayat that mention astronomical concepts. I’m so excited. I have a glow in the dark t-shirt with the constellations on it. My kids will love it!
I’ve invested in my first pair of soccer shoes. I played on the turf the other day and slipped often. I needed more grip and the exercise will be great! While most of the kids will be at the pool this summer, I thought my son may need a soccer buddy 🙂 Also, I am working on my shooting skills because basketball is a family favorite. Alhamdullilah, we signed the kids up for basketball and soccer camps and they are super excited. As a family, I think we will take a few more hikes down by the river and definitely stop for ice cream!
We started some seedlings in a pot. They did awesome Alhamdullilah! Just three flower pots and then some herbs. It took a total of two hours to buy the material and plant it. The kids made dua as they planted. They love the daily watering routine. Herbs are great because they grow fast and the kids can taste test 🙂
Kids love fresh produce. The fruits, veggies, herbs, fresh cheeses and bread are awesome. It’s a good place to teach kids about healthy eating habits. Also, they learn about being environmentally conscious and about how things are grown. Our market also sells home made soaps, cremes and facial cleansers. These cleansers are free of toxic chemicals and the kids love to choose a new scent every couple of weeks. Last time we chose 2 bars, lavender mint and chocolate.
Let’s not forget our best friend on a rainy day 🙂 I’ve noticed many libraries and local bookstores are offering reading incentives. If you read a certain amount of books you can enter a contest to win a prize. Also, stop by the kids cook book section. Maybe they can learn to make their own healthy snacks! Most libraries also offer some summer time programs like crafts, lego activities and story time. The often have a local news board that can lead you to other interesting events in your community.
I’m sure the Grow Mama family has lots more great ideas. Please share!
Sarah Ibrahim is a loving mother of two budding mountain climbers. She enjoys healthy cooking, reading and finding creative ways for family exercise!