How to keep kids from getting bored this summer vacation

It’s all about creating routines and having fun.

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Summer has officially arrived and that means school’s out! All of a sudden, homes are filled with little people who will sometimes need your help coming up with activities. If you’re already hearing cries of, “I’m bored,” then I’ve got some ideas that will help kids of all ages (including grown-up kids, a.k.a. parents), stay busy and not just survive but thrive this summer.

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Babe watch

One key to a happy baby is ensuring they get a good sleep. During the hot summer months, babies’ rooms shouldn’t be too hot or too cold — generally 18°C is recommended as a comfy temperature. A small fan safely positioned well out of reach can create a soft white-noise hum and keep air circulating — just remember not to aim the breeze directly on the baby.

While baby sleeps, mom and dad might want to enjoy an evening breeze on the back deck. Keeping a watchful eye is crucial, and today’s technology can reassure parents that baby is safe in the crib.

The Dream Sock by Owlet monitors baby’s sleep state and sleep quality by tracking heart rate, awake time, oxygen level and movement, and then sends that info to a downloadable app on your smart device. Slip on that sock and gain peace of mind that baby is sleeping soundly while you are nearby.

Kids Unicorn Sparkle Fluoride Toothpaste, $6,
Kids Unicorn Sparkle Fluoride Toothpaste, $6,

Good morning, unicorns!

Little kids can get bored easily, so it’s important to give them regular routines and responsibilities. Morning tasks like making their bed and brushing their teeth are helpful ways to start fresh — but can easily get neglected when sleeping in and eating cereal in front of cartoons. Find fun ways to entice them to make and keep healthy habits.

Unicorn glitter toothpaste should do the trick. Yes, it’s real! And it tastes like rainbows and sunshine (bubble gum). It’s naturally flavoured, helps prevent cavities, strengthens enamel, fights plaque, and it’s never been tested on animals (real or imaginary).

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Did I mention it sparkles? Of course, it does. It’s magical!

After breakfast, help kids get to work on a summer project. How about recording adventures in a scrapbook? Hang a large Bristol board in their bedroom and — presto! — you’ve created a summer memory board. Encourage kids to post pictures of camp, concert tickets and other memorabilia they collect. The challenge: add something each day for a full board of summer memories!

Tweens & teens

One idea for this age group is to get them engaged in a daily summer job at home. It will teach them time management, responsibility and rewards. Simple at-home jobs could be watering plants in the garden, helping to prepare family breakfast each morning (this will help haul them out of bed good and early!), or organizing the recycling.

One job that will get them excited (and get their creative juices flowing), is a redesign of their own bedroom. Offer them a small budget and let them search online for inspiration. Shops like Simons, Walmart or Giant Tiger have on-trend, affordable offerings like bedding, rugs and poster art online.

They get to allocate the budget and learn real-life skills like math. Choosing their favourite colours, a new bed cover and some new art posters is a great way for them to express themselves and feel proud of their choices.

— Karl Lohnes

Want to decorate and need advice? Follow and contact Karl on Instagram Karl_Lohnes

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