According to major retailers, it’s time for Back to School! I was gobsmacked on July 4 when I ran into Walmart to grab burger buns and saw that all of the summer items like kiddie pools, beach toys, and the like had been replaced by notebooks, binders, and pencils galore! I don’t know about you, but I’m not ready to say good bye to summer yet.
My July calendar is full of musicals in the park, library events, Shakespeare performances, and lots of play dates with friends at local splash pads and community swimming pools. We have more events to enjoy than we have time to do them. Regardless of how your children are educated, you have your choice of free or inexpensive activities to enjoy in July. However, many, if not all, of the summer activities come to a screeching halt as many public schools start their new school year in early to mid-August.
For homeschooling families who don’t follow the public school schedule and aren’t ready to start back to school, finding summer activities in August takes some creativity.
What’s a homeschooler to do if they don’t start school until after Labor Day? Keep reading for inspiration and encouragement to enjoy summer until you’re ready to go back to school.
The community pools and splash pads may close with the beginning of public school, but if you have access to a river, lake, or beach this is actually a great time to get in the water. It’s way less crowded after public school is in session and the rates for hotels and Airbnbs are often lower. Our favorite time to hit the beach is in mid to late August just before Labor Day weekend.
Join or create a Facebook homeschooling park day group if you don’t already belong to one. A weekly play date with other homeschooling families is good for kids and parents alike! Bring squirt guns, beach toys, and plenty of snacks and drinks.
Campgrounds are open every day of the year. If you don’t have a tent, you can rent a cabin at many parks for less than the cost of a hotel stay. Our favorite place to camp is at Kampgrounds of America. We’ve stayed at facilities in South Carolina, Texas, and Arizona. Each is slightly different which is the fun of trying different campgrounds. We can even take our little dog with us!
Go to Museums!
Museums are a great way to beat the summer heat and find something that appeals to the whole family. A membership to one museum often gives you access to other museums across the country with reciprocal membership. Many museums offer free community days or reduced price admission on certain days of the week.
Search Local Events in Facebook
I’ve been having a great time using Facebook to find fun, free activities to do for my kiddo and me. Just recently I found a free three-day kids’ sports camp at our local park, movies in the park, free yoga for myself, YMCA Community Day, and guided hikes at several local parks. What a treasure trove of fun!
Host or Attend a Not Back to School Party
Many homeschool groups host a Not Back to School Party that occurs on the day that public school students go back to school. In some areas of the country this is a huge well-attended event. If there isn’t one in your area, get together with other homeschoolers to have a Not Back to School event of your own.
Summer isn’t over until WE say it is! Join me in wringing every last drop out of the summer season before we start hitting the books!