It’s important for kids to learn about computers and technology so they don’t get left behind, but trying to find balance so that your kids don’t end up like couch potatoes glued to their devices is tough. Here are some ideas to help your kids use the technology but without the screens this summer, so they can still get play with electronics while staying healthy and active.
Like many kids, my daughter loves electronic gadgets and tech devices. As much as we try to limit screen time during the summer, our devices can be valuable learning tools and a way for kids to learn new skills.
Today, I’m sharing my favorite ways our family uses tech during the summer without sitting in front of a screen.
Use a Metal Detector to Hunt for Treasure
A few years ago, I bought a metal detector. I heard a story on the news about a couple who found millions of dollars in gold coins on their property in a rusty old can, so I immediately went out and bought an inexpensive metal detector.
Kids love metal detectors, and my daughter and I have been having fun searching around parks and beaches for buried treasure. We haven’t found anything besides some spare change and a few nails, but it’s a great way to get outside and enjoy some fresh air and get some exercise in.
Practice Photography Skills
Nowadays, I take almost all my photos on my phone, but I have several old digital cameras that are sitting in the cupboard collecting dust.
Why not break them out and let your kids have fun learning about photography? You can let them roam around the neighborhood and practice taking photos or bring them on vacation and let them make their own photo journal.
They can learn to upload the photos onto the computer or have them developed and send them to relatives.
This is a great durable digital camera for kids to practice with if you don’t have any old cameras laying around.
Communicate with Walkie Talkies
Two-way radios are so much fun for kids to play with. They can also be used by parents to help keep tabs on where the kids in the neighborhood run off to. I have so many great memories of setting up forts in the yard and house and talking to my friends over the two-way radios and pretending we were spies or law enforcement.
Play with Remote Control Cars
Remote control cars are always a fun gift idea for kids. They are fun to take to the park and build ramps and hills to drive them over or just use around the backyard.
Listen to Podcasts and Audio Books
If you are headed on a road trip this summer, or just a few long car rides why not pop on a fun pod cast or audio book for the kids? I personally get very car sick and unfortunately it’s a trait I passed on to my daughter. We can’t read in the car so an audio book or family friendly podcast is a great alternative.
Real Life Robots
Okay, this one might be a bit of a stretch but if you have a robot vacuum or lawn mower, why not let the kids help get it set up? My daughter was fascinated by our Roomba for the first couple of weeks when we started using it.
You can also get kids robot toys that they can build and control themselves. It teaches them the basics of how robotics work and they have a fun toy to play with too!
Kids Fit Bit
Ever since I got my Fit Bit, my daughter has begged me to play with it. These are a great tool to help get kids moving and motivated to exercise. I am probably going to get my daughter the kids version for her upcoming birthday. Kids love a challenge and will work toward getting their “steps in”.
This is a cute Spiderman themed one.
What are your favorite screen-free tech tools and toys for kids? Let me know in the comments!
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