It can be hard to fit in quality time together when your schedules are packed with work, school and extracurricular events. Doing activities together is a good way to build joy and connection into your family dynamic.

These ideas are appropriate for the whole crew — start by adding a few to your family calendar. Post the list and put a star by favorite activities or take these ideas with you when traveling and discover new ways to spend time together.

Close to Home

You don’t have to go far to get moving! Try some of these ideas to get your heart rate up in your neighborhood.

  1. Obstacle Course – Use items you have on hand like balls, hula hoops and scrap lumber to create an epic indoor or outdoor obstacle course. You’ll be surprised how a few sprints back and forth and through an obstacle can really get the heart beating.
  2. Garden – Make no mistake, gardening is hard work. It takes constant effort from preparing the soil to weeding. Working together in the garden, picking and shelling beans is an activity from a bygone tradition.
  3. Build a Fort – There’s nothing like a fort that creates a prop for a play or pretend. Break out the pillows, blankets and boxes for an epic afternoon of fort building. You can also set up a tent in the backyard for an easy fort to play inside.
  4. Scavenger Hunt – Divide into teams and write a list of 10 items for the other group to find. Set the timer and head outside to see who comes back with the most items on the list.
  5. Bake Something – Start a baking project the whole family can get excited about. Whether you create an elaborate dessert or create custom pizzas, it’s a fun activity for the whole family.
  6. Take a Class – Check out active classes for kids offered at your local YMCA or community center like gymnastics, sports and more.
  7. Visit a Local Museum – Not every museum has to be a bore to your family. Some museums provide interactive activities that the whole family can enjoy.
  8. Walk the Dog – Get your favorite four-legged friend(s) into the action — leash up and take Fido for a stroll. Stop at a park and play fetch for while to add some extra fun to the walk.
  9. Chore Round – Make chore time workout time! Write five or six tasks on a whiteboard and see who can complete their list the quickest.
  10. Yard Clean Up – Set the timer for 30 minutes and pick up as many sticks and leaves as you can. Many hands make a light load and cleaning together helps build service and teamwork in your family.
  11. Play a Board Game – This is an easy way to plan an activity that brings out some fun competition. Board games come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and can be a short activity or a long one – depending on the one you select.
  12. Dance Party – Sometimes an impromptu dance that breaks out with a fun song is the best way to have a dance party. Here’s a favorite song that’s quickly becoming a classic for breakout dancing.

Trampoline Park – Bouncing around on a trampoline is a great activity that combines fun and exercise. This is a great year-round activity.

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