Summer is coming to an end, ok well technically it isn’t over till September 22nd but my kids start school TOMORROW! and to me that means summer is over. I am ready for them to go back, just to give me a little more quiet and time to myself- and maybe even a few hours of a clean house- but really I could use a couple more weeks with them to do some of the things on our Summer Bucket List we didn’t get around to.
My little guy doesn’t start preschool till the first week of September though so here is a fun play date for those little people in your life, or even plan a weekend party for friends and family to squeeze in one more day of water fun before it gets too cold.
We decided to have a cousin party and had them each bring their favorite stuffed sea friend (You want them to be soft so they can be tossed around in our parachute games and not hurt anyone).
We started off by looking at some books about sea animals. This cute board book called “Hello, Ocean Friends” by Violet Lemay is perfect for preschool age and even younger children. It introduced some fun sea creatures. The older kids had fun with the book as well, getting the little ones excited about what animal would come next and how they might say “hello” such as- “Hi”, “What’s Up” or “What’s going on?” We had a couple other books but they didn’t want to sit for books, they wanted to get to the fun stuff!!
So next we played some parachute games with the animals they brought.
All you need is:
- a king or queen sized blue sheet
- a favorite stuffed sea animal
The first game we call “Just Keep Swimming”. This one is a favorite of ours. Have all the children throw their sea animal onto the sheet and then take their place at the edge of the sheet. Each child holds on to the edge of the sheet, make sure they are spread out so there are no big gaps for the animals to fall off. Then make big waves by lifting the sheet up and down but try to keep the sea animals in the “water”. It is fun to hear the kids giggle as the animals go flying.
The next game is “Under The Sea”. Place all the sea animals under the sheet. Make waves with the sheet, above the animals. Send a child down to retrieve their animal one at a time. See if they can hold their breath while diving down, adding urgency to getting in and out as quickly as possible.
The last game is “Shark in the Water”. Played similar to duck, duck, goose. As the children are making waves above, one child (the “shark”) is under the “sea”. The shark goes around the circle lightly dragging their hand across the legs of the other children (making the Jaws sound adds a little thrill to it all. du-dun, du-dun, dun-dun…) The shark chooses it’s victim by grabbing the leg. The victim will then let go of the sheet and run around the outer part of the “sea”, the shark coming out to chase them. The victim must get back to their spot before the shark tags them. If they don’t make it back to their spot before being tagged, the victim becomes the new shark.
After the parachute games it was time to get wet. I drew a shark on the fence with chalk…
and let the kids draw their favorite sea animal as well.
Then the kids used water balloons and water guns to try and erase them. I made this water balloon launcher years ago, for my husband to take on scout camps, out of surgical rubber tubing. It has brought a lot of fun to parties and camps through the years, the kids love it. I have had to re-make the pouch a few times- the pulling really hard does a number on it.
With the kids playing it gave me a chance to pull out some food. When they were finally worn out and ready to rest we enjoyed some yummy munchies. Fishy crackers, “sea weed” dip and chips, starfish bread with cream cheese spread, “sea plant” veggie straws and some fresh fruit. MMMM refreshing.
Here’s to holding onto summer for just a bit longer.
SEE THE HAPPY!