When you visit the nations capital you will find dozens of great free things to do in Washington D.C., but you’ll also find amazing beauty, architecture and history at every turn. This city offers tons of great free attractions alongside amazing restaurants, museums and kid friendly events for your entire family to enjoy.
Visit The National Mall: This monument in the nations capital is one of the most infamous images having been seen in movies, television shows and pictures world wide. It’s a great place to walk, take photographs and see first hand where history has been made with rallies and events during our nations history.you
Visit The White House: Anyone can walk outside the gates to photograph the White House or get their picture taken in front of the building on the sidewalk. However, you can also take free tours of the White House if desired. If wanting to tour the White House you’ll need to plan in advance and reserve tickets since it is in high demand. You may need to book several years in advance.
Visit the Chinatown Friendship Arch: Located on 7th and H Streets NW this is a fun attraction that is quick and easy to visit, but well worth your time. A great photo opportunity and landmark in itself, the arch is visited by millions of people each year.
Visit the Lincoln Memorial: One of the largest pieces of statuary known, this epic memorial to President Abraham Lincoln is visited by millions of visitors each year. Take your picture next to one of the most beloved presidents the United States have ever known.
Visit the National Monument: This large monument stands proudly in the center of the city that is known by all. A simple walk from the Lincoln Memorial and you are at the National Monument for great photo opportunities as well as a history of the United States.
Visit the National Archives: See the Declaration of Independence up close in the National Archives. Other well known historical documents are located there and lead to great conversations with your children about our nations history, as well as how legislation is passed for many bills and amendments that are shown in the archives.
Visit the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall: This is truly a historic monument that will leave you humbled at the sacrifice of so many young men and women who went to war. Vietnam Veterans often are found here sharing information, looking for names of friends or family members It is a great teaching tool for your kids to learn about war, military involvement in other countries and the ultimate sacrifice those individuals made not just for our freedom, but to better another country.
Visit The National Museum Of American History: Famous for housing the original American flag as well as memorials from wars, advances in technology and even a few movies and celebrities that have impacted our country, this is a favorite free thing to do in Washington D.C. when you visit. Learn about the most beloved pieces of our history while finding out unique facts about cinema, arts and the founding fathers.
I love making lunch more fun — and here is a great way: pop a note in it!
This is a FREE Printable, just click on it and go crazy: 8 lunch notes
If it’s one thing the little people like to do, its a hands-on craft activity that ties in with the current theme. This is a great list of kids crafts for Memorial Day, 4th of July, even Veterans Day with all the fun red white and blue activities for the munchkins. we scoured around, and found 15 fun and easy ideas to help keep them busy…and these kids crafts are very budget-friendly.
- Paper Sparklers via It Happens in a Blink
- Patriotic Pinwheels via Practically Functional
- Patriotic Recycled Wind Chimes via Creative Green Living
- Patriotic Flip Flops via Baby Loving Mama
- Patriotic Duct Tape Parade Stick via Crafts by Amanda
- Easy Painted Flag Tee via Organized 31
- Uncle Sam Top Hat via Condo Blues
- Patriotic Sun Catchers via The Suburban Mom
- American Flag Popsicle Stick Craft via My Heavenly Recipes
- Confetti Popper Rockets via Alpha Mom
- Patriotic Cardboard Tube Bracelet via Crafts by Amanda
- DIY Patriotic Sidewalk Chalk by Project Alicia
- Paper Plate Patriotic Hat via Tutus & Tea Parties
- Patriotic Paper Lantern via Kids Activities Blog
- Tissue Paper Flag via The Suburban Mom
Learning how to tell time is a challenge for a lot of littles, so using a fun and creative way to help them makes for an easier time of it. Check out a bunch of these fun and cute ideas that we found on the blog-o-sphere.
Time Telling Activities for Kids:
- Sidewalk Chalk Clock (Who Would’ve Thought It?): http://whowouldvethoughtit.blogspot.com/2009/05/telling-time.html
- Telling Time Play Dough Mats (This Reading Mama): http://thisreadingmama.com/free-clock-playdough-mats/
- Telling Time Paper Plate (Frugal Fun for Boys): http://frugalfun4boys.com/2012/10/03/paper-plate-clock-activity-for-learning-to-tell-time/
- Hickory Dickory Dock Craft (Still Playing School): http://www.stillplayingschool.com/2014/09/hickory-dickory-dock-clock-craft-time.html
- Telling Time Clock Station (Creekside Learning): http://creeksidelearning.com/learning-how-to-tell-time-2/
- Learning to Tell Time with the Very Grouchy Lady Bug (Mom to 2 Lil Posh Divas): http://www.momto2poshlildivas.com/2011/06/learning-to-tell-time-with-very-grouchy.html
- Time Telling Sensory Bin (Life Over C’s): http://lifeovercs.com/time-sensory-bin-free-printable-telling-time/
- Hickory Dickory Dock Tuff Spot (Adventures of Adam): http://adventuresofadam.co.uk/hickory-dickory-dock-tuff-spot/
- Great START Piep Piep Piep or Making Watches with Toddlers (Red Ted Art): http://www.redtedart.com/2010/07/07/great-start-piep-piep-piep-or-making-watches-with-toddlers/
- Time Telling Hoola Hoop (Creekside Learning): http://creeksidelearning.com/telling-time-activities/
Teaching children how to fish
Teaching a child to fish opens up decades for enjoying fine food, accomplishment, good fellowship, patience, and an excuse to grow a four day beard. How then should one go about it?
1) START FROM A BOAT: Trolling from a boat is the safest, most controllable environment. Starting on a river is an invitation to a nasty accident. Similarly, fishing off the side of a dock or pier is just asking for an excited child to get very wet, very quickly. So find a quiet lake or river and troll.
2) USE A LURE: The debate will last forever as to whether lures or live bait are a better way of attracting fish. Depending on the child’s delicacy of stomach, it may be a turn-off to immediately start threading worms, leeches, or minnows on a hook.
3) SUNFISH: If there is a local body of water inhabited by sunfish, go there. Sunfish find absolutely anything in the water appealing, and so the child will know the thrill of landing something without having to wait for hours.
4) LET THE CHILD LEAD: When the child is ready to try and cast, bait a hook, or reel in a fish, he or she will let the experienced person in the boat know. Try and avoid pressure. Just handing the child an already cast rod with the instructions to shout out when there is a pull on the line is quite enough.
5) WEAR A LIFE JACKET: Also wear a hat and apply sunscreen. Water reflects the sun and one can end up with a nasty burn even on cool, cloud-covered days.
6) CATCH AND RELEASE: If a caught fish is not really a keeper, gently remove the hook and let it go free. It is never too early to teach respect for nature.
After all that, enjoy a good shore lunch and tell a few stories. Children will never forget the day they learned to fish and will soon be casting in the back yard with a fly rod and small weight (a nut or washer from the bottom of the toolbox) in preparation for the next fishing trip.
5 Fun Ideas for a Day at the Beach
For mom or dad spending a day at the beach might mean a day to relax and enjoy the sun and sand. But eventually kids are going to grow tired of building sand castles and not want to swim. Having a few ideas on hand to stave off boredom is always a good idea! If you have a summer beach picnic or get together these are also fun ideas to organize so kids can have fun while parent socialize. You may be able to enlist older children to supervise the games or have parents take turns being in charge.
Seashell Hunting and Rock Collecting
If you’re visiting a seaside beach, just walking along the beach where the tide comes in can you’ll find lots of shells. If your child is like most children you will have to help them sort through and choose the best shells to take home. You could make a scavenger hunt out of shell or rock discovery. Make a list of different types, colors, or sizes of shells and rocks to discover.
The beach is wonderful place to go rock collecting. You will find many types of rocks on the beach – agates, jaspers, quartz, and jadeite among many others. You could even find fossils or shark teeth among the rocks.
The tides rolling in and out bring in lots of gifts from the sea that are deposited on the beach every day, such as sea glass, tropical seeds or fossils. Equip children with baskets or bags to find items that they can take home. Once at home you can make a keepsake by attaching the items to a canvas or adding them to a treasure box.
Sand Castle Building Contest
Bring buckets, molds and shovels to create amazing sand castles. Pair up children or let older children work independently to build their creations. You could have parents award prizes for the most creative, most lifelike, etc. If competition isn’t your thing, have the children work together to build a community of castles with trenches, moats and towers. Additional items like fabric flags, seashells to adorn the walls, and rocks to line the moats all make good use of the beach combing items children found.
Art on the Beach
What kind of creations can children make using only items they find on the beach? Make a game of it! Let children search for objects and then let them create. To make it just a little bit more difficult for older children, set a time limit for searching, and a time limit for creating.
This game requires more than one player but there are several variations. You’ll need a large cup or bucket and a smaller cup or bucket. Set the large bucket up some distance from the water (adjust based on age of the children), and then see who can fill the big bucket the fastest by running back and forth with the smaller cup.
we made a quick trip to Michael’s Craft Store and
Miss Sarah found a bunch of blossoms on the floor –
under the floral displays.
I told her that they belonged to the store.
Even if they fell off the flowers,
they belonged to the store –
but we could ASK if she could have them.
The store manager said yes.
Did I ever have a happy kiddo, LOL!
Some we will turn into headbands…
And some will go into the Princess ivy in the
Princess bedroom… you will see!
Just remember, it is always a “no” if you never ask!
Here are some pictures of what we did with 98 Kindergartners yesterday — they all wore their Tye-Dye T-shirts that they made JUST for the field trip.
Cookies from the Farmer’s Market on King Street (we had vouchers for the kids) and we got squeaky cheese curds too!
A quick tour of the Capitol – and did you know not one power tool was used in making it?
Ahhh— we made it to the zoo, but only after lunch and…
A quick visit to the playground and “big shoe”
I teamed up with another parent and we watched 5 kiddos – here were “our boys” on the big tortoise
They all got tokens for a carousel ride too (normally it’s $1.00)
Then, a quick lunch for the goats (and hand sanitizer for everyone after it, LOL)
You simply have to LOVE these kinds of things – they have a bunch all over the Zoo…from Polar Bears to Orangutans.
The kids have a blast and so do you.
(no covers or straws on the drinks from the zoo to protect the animals)
I’ll share pictures tomorrow.