Are you desperate to get the kids off their screens and out into the garden? Roll up your sleeves for these six super outdoor projects this summer…
1. Glow in the dark jam jar lights
Kids and adults love these jars: they’ll look great left in the garden, but double up as handy night lights for kids who are are little afraid of the dark! Take a clean, empty jam jar and paint lots of dots on the inside using glow in the dark paint. Leave it to dry and place it in the sun for at least one hour to activate the paint and enjoy showing them off!
2. Outdoor chalk board
Here’s one for the grown ups to make and the kids to enjoy… Follow this step by step guide to make your own outdoor chalkboard, created by an assembly of backer boards, frames, screws and nails. All you’ll need to do is paint the backer board using black chalkboard paint, provide multi coloured chalks and let the kids doodle in the afternoon sun!
3. Popped bubble art
On a hazy summer afternoon, take a large sheet of white paper outside. Mix bubble liquid (the kind found in children’s party bags) with some food colouring. Dip in your bubble wand, blow bubbles as usual and direct them on to the paper. As the bubbles land and pop, they create big beautiful shapes and colours – a perfect print to display in the kids’ bedrooms.
4. DIY race car track
Move aside those beautiful Italian cypress trees from You Garden, take 20 bricks of any colour (though grey bricks will look the most realistic) and dig out a patch of the garden (perhaps calling upon the assistance of some little helpers). Sink the bricks into the earth so that they’re as flat as possible. Arrange the bricks into the shape of a race track (the more twists, turns and right angles the better), before painting a white centre line down each brick to divide the track into lanes. Check out this tutorial for more information and some fantastic photos!
5. A slip and slide
With just a long piece of heavy duty drop cloth, a packet of U shaped garden stakes and a lot of water (and possibly a bottle of washing up liquid for extra slip), you and the kids can have so much fun! Unroll the drop cloth (preferably downhill if possible), secure in place with the stakes and get a good run at it… the kids will wear themselves out and you’ll win yourself a well-earned break!
6. Recycled bottle bowling
Take ten empty water bottles and spray them with white spray paint. Then, have the kids wrap red duct tape around the width of the bottle near to the top to create the appearance of proper bowling pins. Fill the bottles with a small amount of sand to help weigh them down (adding extra sand to make it more challenging for older children), then roll a rubber ball or weight ball to knock them down in a game of outdoor ten-pin bowling!