Nothing is as fun for kids as hands-on summer activities. There is something magical about special summer camps and activities when you’re a kid. But most of us can’t afford to send our kids to summer camp all summer long. Instead, you can create your own summertime camp magic by hosting your very own DIY summer camp! Kids will love these screen-free activities and backyard summer camp projects. Put together a summer camp for your kids, or invite some friends and neighbors along for even more fun! Choose from the backyard summer camp themes in this list, or make your own for weeks of summertime bliss.
How to Host a DIY Summer Camp
The most important part about a DIY summer camp is that it is fun for all involved. It should be fun for kids, but also fun for you! Pick a theme that you are passionate about, and you’ll enjoy the activities as much as, or even more so than your own kids!
If you choose to put the camp on and include other kids, make sure you have enough parent help. I suggest having one adult for every six kids at your backyard summer camp.
Plan everything well in advance, and be prepared for things to go not exactly according to plan. Purchase all supplies the week before, and make sure you know exactly how to do all the projects before trying them with the kids!
Pick a time that works with your schedule. Summer nights are long, so if you work during the day, maybe the best time for your at home summer camp is 6-8 PM. If you’re too busy during the week, you could host a “camp day” every Saturday or Sunday for five weeks in the summer. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box when planning your summer camp! You could even use all ideas in one full day of intense camp fun.
DIY Summer Camp Themes
These ready-to-go summer camp themes will give you activity ideas for a week of theme-based summertime fun!
Engineering Summer Camp
STEM Summer Camp
Rainbow Summer Camp
Pokemon Summer Camp
Magical Summer Camp
Under the Sea Summer Camp
Complete Summer Camp Books
Don’t have time to create your own summer camp curriculum? These summer camp books do it for you! Find everything you need for these hands-on backyard summer camp themes contained in these pages!
Camp Mom Summer Activities Pack
More Ideas for Backyard Summer Camp
These summer camp books include all the resources you need to host your own backyard summer camp with little prep and a whole lot of fun. You’ll find a wealth of camp ideas and activities here for kids aged toddler up to middle school!