When I was in middle school I remember sitting in Algebra class and…hmmm, well it was either the girl in front of me or written on the poster next to my desk (LOL) said, “If you are bored, you are boring.” HUH? I struggled with that, and still kind of do these 24 years later.
My son, Kaden, is 7. He is an active, happy, wonderful little boy who loves to read, run, play basketball, tumble, and hang out with his little sister. He also likes to have a plan for the day…and this weekend was no different. Rather than “torture” him with an aimlessness for the long weekend, I decided to create the “Mielitz Family Letter Activity Jar.”
Kaden knows that there are some weekends we will be too busy to pull a letter, some weekends we’ll pull two, and sometimes just one. But, this gives him, and frankly all of us, something extra to look forward to on the weekends. He is also aware that Momma and Daddy don’t have a lot of money to be tossing on different activities, so we all had to think of ideas that cost nothing or had a limit to spending. (Our most expensive is $50–a trip to the Zoo which is an hour away. We had 4 other choices (Kaden’s choice, Slaeda’s choice, Daddy’s choice and Momma’s choice) that have a cap of $20, and the rest should cost us nothing.) **see end of post for more suggestions** We also incorporated some work around the house–working together as a team to keep the house in order makes it go by faster and the kids have fun racing to see who can put their laundry and toys away faster.
Since it was the first day, and I didn’t even have the jar put together, I started with A…for Art and Athletics. My husband and I got our workout on, then we ran into Hobby Lobby to grab a few last minute supplies…a word to the wise, if you choose to do art projects, know what you have on hand and only take cash into the store…we went a smidge over budget. 😉 That afternoon, the kids created a banner, painting numerous triangles with images that made them think of family.
While the first paintings dried, we went outside and did a couple of road races as a family…who could run the fastest, who could run the dog the best. Slaeda, our two year old, ran almost the whole block! We talked about what kind of athletic activity we could do next time we pulled the letter A. We also played some indoor basketball with a laundry basket and small soft basketball.
After the athletics, we experimented with some straw art…I needed to thin out the paint a little more, since I didn’t have water colors on hand, I thinned out tempera paint, but overall the kids were thrilled and we added their straw art to the banners.
Finally, we worked as a family to complete the jar and the letters and activities. This entire day was joyful…we had focus, we had time for my husband to work on his homework and decompress (while the kids painted) and we all got some exercise and sunshine. We are very excited for this upcoming Saturday and pulling a new letter!!
A: Art and Athletics
E: Exploring where we live
R: Reading, Racing, and Resting…with potential for rearranging a room
L: Laundry (all done and put away) and Legos
X: X marks the spot! Scavenger Hunt!!
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