Summer is here! The kids are home from school! It’s all fun and games until they start saying the B word… Bored! Well, here are a few ideas to keep your kids occupied.

(1) Encourage them to do something else

active kids trampoline computer-free summerI read an article once that talked about how an object in motion stays in motion so if you point your kids in one direction, maybe they will keep in that direction. With that thought and some ideas on Pinterest, I came up with my ingenious plan to (try to) keep my tween off the computer, for a little while anyway. She has to do her “CRAP” every day – Chores, Read 30 min, be Active, and Practice (piano, math, etc). When she is determined to get on the computer, these will last less than two hours. But about half of the time, she gets interested in her book longer than the 30 minutes or is having fun on the trampoline or some other reason and it keeps her in that direction, off the computer. Of course, you can come up with a more child-friendly acronym if you want.

(2) See what’s going on

Check out local listings and calendars of family-friendly things to do around Nashville. Here are a couple.

Nashville Fun For Families
http://www.nashvillefunforfamilies.com/

Ms. Cheap’s Free Summer Fun
http://www.tennessean.com/story/life/shopping/ms-cheap/2016/05/27/ms-cheaps-guide-free-summer-fun/84652712/

(3) Get out of the house

hermitage interactive multimedia tour for kidsCheck out some of the historic areas in and around Nashville. I know, you’re thinking the kids won’t be interested in that at all. But there are a few ideas that make it fun for kids.

Franklin On Foot offers an I Spy booklet that takes your family on an I Spy tour of the historic district, even including the cemetery where you make a gravestone rubbing. The booklet can be purchased at the Heirloom Shop downtown Franklin or directly from their website.

Geocaching will take you all sorts of places, from historic parks to urban areas and everywhere in between. It’s a real-life treasure hunt and most of the caches will have trinkets inside as a prize (be sure to bring some of your own to replace the ones you take).

The Hermitage has recently introduced a new multimedia tour for kids. For an $8 ticket upgrade, you will get a handheld device with an interactive timeline, images, maps of the property, and stories and information all around the grounds. The kids’ version is guided by a friendly virtual parrot and includes games and information in a fun way.

Get out ahead of the B word this year and have some fun!