When the kids are busy and having fun, it’s easy to feel like a bit of a broken record—telling them to drink up their water. However, with a few fun and hydrating activities, you can get them chugging away effortlessly, even without you having to remind them!
When water is easily accessible, like in a reusable drink bottle and close by, it can help serve as its own reminder to sip. Let’s look at some activities to get the kids drinking up and out of your hair for a few hours!
1. Backyard water park
Was it really summertime as a kid if you didn’t have a slip ‘n’ slide made from an old blue tarp? Well, these days, they have more skin-friendly slip ‘n’ slide sets you can pop up and use to entertain the kids (and the adults) for hours on end.
If you’re not a fan of the old slip ‘n’ slide, there are plenty of other fun ways to create a backyard water park. Water pistols are always a hit with kids and adults of all ages, especially on a hot day. Better still, they can be picked up very affordably and reused time and time again. You can also use the water pistols for some other fun backyard games, like setting up cups the kids have to race to fill up with water guns or even using them to play ‘tag’.
If you are planning on having fun with some outdoor water games, be sure to fill them with fresh, clean water. The kids will be tempted to shoot the water directly into their mouths when they get thirsty — so it’s good to be prepared!
2. Scavenger hunt and sip
Scavenger hunts are such a good way to keep the kids busy, particularly if you have family or their friends over. They are also super easy to set up, and you can even get the kids to drink up on that delicious H20 to get to their next clue!
To build a scavenger hunt in the backyard:
- Pick a list of locations you can easily hide a clue that is reachable to kids but isn’t too obvious, ordering them as you wish.
- Next, create a list of clues to get the kids from location to location.
- Write each clue on a piece of paper (you can recycle these later or even use them in a paper mache craft) and hide them in each location.
- If the kids need a hint, tell them they need to perform an action, like doing a dance, taking a drink from their favourite reusable cup or telling you a fact.
- Make sure there is a prize at the end of the scavenger hunt, like a puzzle or treat the kids can enjoy together.
3. Set up some fruit-infused water stations together
One of the easiest ways to get kids to drink more water—particularly when it’s hot out and they’re too busy having fun—is to make water delicious and accessible. DIY fruit-infused water stations are one of the easiest ways to do this, and you can even get the kids involved so they are more engaged. You’ll even find yourself going back for another cup of deliciously flavoured water!
Fun fruit-infused water combinations to try:
- Strawberry, lemon and mint.
- Kiwi fruit and orange.
- Watermelon and mint.
- Lemon, ginger, cucumber and mint.
- Grapefruit and rosemary.
- Lemon and lime.
Get creative and mix your own favourite fruits, vegetables and herbs!
4. Dance parties with water breaks
Everybody dance now! Dancing is a fun way to burn some energy and even refine kids’ coordination skills. To keep the dancing going for longer, mix up the tempos of the songs—finding music with different beats per minute (BPM), from slower songs to higher songs.
Your kids will obviously have their favourite songs they’ll want to request, but be sure to throw in a few of your favourite childhood classics too so they can get to know a broader range of music. They’ll love to see you join in and have fun, or you can sit back and play DJ. You can find some great kid’s dance mix playlists online, or you can make your own or just turn on the radio!
If you do use the radio, be sure to use the ad breaks to remind the kids to drink up. Keeping hydrated during the slower songs or ads helps the kids stay hydrated and not be panting for a drink, trying to catch up on hydration at the end!
5. Good old gardening!
Gardening is such a great activity for kids. They’ll not only love getting involved in digging, planting, watering and nurturing their garden, but also seeing how a little bit of TLC can bring to life something amazing (or even delicious). You can show them how they are just like plants, needing the right nutrients and enough water to keep them happy, healthy and growing.
If you rent and you still want to introduce the kids to gardening, no worries! A few pots or even a windowsill herb garden is all it takes to get the kids interested in growing some plants. Some types of tomatoes are even great to grow on balconies, and the kids will love getting to munch on their hard-work when they grow!
We all know water is important, but when you’re a kid and having fun, it’s often the last thing on your mind. By integrating good drinking habits in everyday fun and activities, it helps kids guzzle down their H20 without even thinking about it.