Cool off this summer with seven great ways to play with water.

This summer is hot! Summer time heat is the perfect excuse to pull out the hose, squirt guns, spray bottles and basically anything that can propel water (empty plastic dish soap bottles are perfect). Then let the games begin! When it comes to water play, the rules to remember are 1) the wetter, the better, 2) let experiments happen–learning about water is great, and 3) have fun! Here are seven fabulous ways to play with water:

Duck, Duck, Splash. As in Duck, Duck, Goose, everyone sits in a circle expect one person who is “it”. S/he walks around the circle tapping the shoulder or head of the other players gently and says “duck”. Then s/he picks one person as goose. Instead of saying “goose”, she pours a small amount of water from the cup on that person. The goose then stands and chases “it” one time around the circle. If s/he is tags, that person goes again. If the player reaches the empty spot and sits down before s/he gets tagged, the goose is passed the cup of water, which is refilled, and s/he becomes the new “it”.

Car Wash. Pull out the hose, sponges, buckets and soap and get washing, really! Kids love the opportunity to wash the car on a hot summer day–or their bikes, trikes, and other toys to wash.

Sprinkler. This is summer’s rite of passage. Get the swimsuits on and the hose and sprinkler out. Running through the sprinkler is simple, but so much fun.

Water Balloon Toss. Each pair begin with one water balloon a step apart. Each time a balloon is tossed and caught, the catcher takes one step backwards. Pairs see how far apart they can get. When it is dropped, grab another water balloon and try again!

Sponge Pass. Have everyone sit down in a line facing forward. At the front, place a bucket full of water with a large sponge. At the back of the line place an empty bucket. The object of the game is to get as much of the water from the front bucket to the back. The team must pass the sponge over their heads to the person behind them. When it reaches the back, the last person must squeeze the water into the bucket (again over her/his head) and pass the sponge back to the front.

Cup Relay. Everyone stands in a line behind an empty bucket. A full bucket is placed further away. The first person in line runs to the full bucket with a cup in hand and attempts to get as much water into the empty bucket then passes the cup to the next person in line. You can also have two teams play to see who can get the most water in their empty bucket.

Water Pinatas. Hang a full water balloon from a tree branch and let the kids swing away, blindfolded (supervised, of course). While it may not spill candy for kids to scramble for, it’s sure to bring out squeals and giggles as it cools down a crowd.

How do you and your kids stay cool on a hot summer day?

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