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Fast approaching is summer – the time of year when kids are out of school and lounging around with little to do. While mom and dad are juggling work and other commitments, grandparents are often the summertime heroes, who step in to help look after the grandkids in times of need. But keeping the grandkids entertained can be tricky. You want to find activities that are fun and interesting – for you as well as them. Here are some tips for keeping the grandkids entertained in ways that will leave them thinking their time with Grandma and Grandpa was pretty cool.
Everybody Has to Eat, So Eat Well!
Whether you’re playing the role of chef or chauffer to the restaurant, chances are you’re going to have to feed your grandkids. So, you might as well make it fun and tasty for you and them. If you’re cooking at home, get them cooking with you. Whether you show them how to prepare a beloved family recipe or are just grilling hotdogs, let them help. Teach them a cooking tip or put them in charge of preparing something, even if it’s something simple like lemonade. If you’re eating out, take them to one of your favorite kid-friendly restaurants and teach them about the cuisine. Do a little research on beloved dishes – from hamburgers to chicken parmesan – and quiz them on the ingredients and origins of the food. Going out doesn’t have to be an expensive endeavor either. Be sure to check out the dining discounts on the AARP Member Advantages website for family favorites at a variety of restaurants.
Learn Something – Together
A great way to stay sharp mentally and to have fun while connecting with your grandchildren is to learn something together. Take a class together during the summer. Many local community colleges offer a range of courses from cooking and music to sports, like golf, and more. You can learn online together, too. Research free, open online courses. Some of the best universities in the country put courses of study online for free. Learning a new language is also a great skill to pick up at any age. For a limited time, AARP Members can get a discount on online language learning courses through a Special Merchant Offer provided by Rocket Languages*.
Beat the Heat with Summer Blockbusters
Each year, Hollywood saves its biggest, brightest spectacles for summer. These days, you can almost always count on some superheroes to be on the big screen, but there’s plenty to see for everyone and every age. Common Sense Media, a nonprofit dedicated to helping kids thrive in a world of media and technology, has a handy Kids’ Summer Movie Guide to help you figure out what to see – and what to skip – with the grandkids. Picked your flick? AARP Members can enjoy great movie discounts at Regal Cinemas.
Share a Cultural Experience
Nothing spans generations like music and the arts. Sharing some of the music and bands that you love is a great way to connect with your grandkids and for them to learn more about you and your life. And listening to theirs helps you stay current with what’s cool in their world. Looking for a rainy day task? Make playlists for each other featuring some of your favorite music. Are you daring enough to listen to the playlist they’ll make for you? While playlists are great, you could go even one step further and take the grandkids to see a show. Check the AARP Member Advantages website for discounts on tickets through Ticketmaster and Cirque Du Soleil performances.
Explore The Great Outdoors
Whether you’re seven or seventy, getting outside and exploring nature can be awe-inspiring. According to the National Park Foundation, there are 417 national park sites spanning more than 84 million acres in each state in the U.S. (including parks in Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa and Guam). They include natural wonders, battlefields, monuments and more. Whether you’re visiting the Everglades in Florida or Alcatraz Island in San Francisco, planning a trip around visiting a national park is an easy way to find a fun adventure. For an even more detailed experience at a national park, consider a guided vacation tour. AARP Members are eligible for discounts of an additional $100 per person on guided tours of national parks through Grand European Travel. Get exploring!
*For Special Merchant Offers, all goods, services and discounts are provided by third-parties, not by AARP or its affiliates. AARP and its affiliates do not endorse and are not responsible for these goods, services and discounts. These offers are available for a limited-time and may have restrictions. Please contact the merchant directly for full details. Merchants may pay compensation for purchases made through these links.
These articles present general information and are for informational purposes only. They are not a substitute for legal, financial, medical, or other professional advice.