Summer Sensory Integration

Summer is here! It’s time to get outside and encourage your children to hone their skills through play! It is so important for children to maintain and develop their skills during the summer while focusing on gross motor, fine motor, oral-motor skills and exploring various textures. Here are some activity ideas and strategies that can be implemented to target various skill sets all summer long!

Ball Activities 

  • Tossing and catching a ball up in the air while standing inside of a hula hoop

  • Toss a ball at the wall, clap your hands and catch it

  • Hold a beach ball overhead with two hands to stretch your shoulders and back. Hold for 10 seconds.

  • Hold a ball with two hands at your belly button. Can you pass the ball around your waist without dropping it on the ground?

  • Create a small obstacle course with lawn chairs and pool noodles, can you kick a ball around the obstacles?

Fine Motor Activities at the Beach

  • Trace letters, numbers, and draw favorite characters in the sand 

  • Search and dig for buried seashells 

  • Scoop and pour sand and water using cups, bowls, spoons, and toy shovels

Heavy Work Activities at the Beach

  • Pull/push a cooler across the sand 

  • Have your child carry their own chair 

  • Dig holes/build sandcastles 

  • Collect seashells, sand glass, or drift wood and carry them all in a large bucket or push a basket!

Tactile/Messy Play Activities 

  • Play in the sand or make your own sand bucket/sand box at home

  • Play with shaving cream 

  • Play in the dirt/ help with garden upkeep 

  • Make ice pops or lemonade, knead cookie dough, or help to mix up pasta or potato salad

  • Make slime, play dough, water beads, and more!

  • Make rainbow spaghetti 

    • For tactile play, it is important to keep your child comfortable and encourage them to describe the textures of each item, and how it makes them feel! If using hands is too much, start with gloves, a paint brush, or a cup

Oral-Motor Activities 

  • Blow bubbles in a bowl with water and dish-soap, in chocolate milk, or in ice cold water

  • Make fruit popsicles to enjoy 

  • Drink thick fruit smoothies with a straw 

At Home

  • Sorting seeds into piles for planting 

  • Go in the sprinkler 

  • Swimming in the pool

  • Draw with chalk and then blend it with hands! Can they draw their own obstacle course?

  • Car wash 

  • Pitch a tent in your backyard and use a flashlight to write letters on the wall 

  • Make letters out of marshmallows and toothpicks 

  • Have a picnic in your backyard and have your child open and close all the containers 

  • Water flowers with a spray bottle 

  • Make frozen paint ice cubes to paint with 

Gross Motor Skills

  • Have a water balloon toss

  • Play balloon volleyball or balloon tennis 

  • Go for a bike ride 

  • Set up a hopscotch game 

  • Create an outdoor obstacle course 

  • Wheelbarrow walk or log roll on the gross 

  • Kick or throw a blow-up beach volleyball

  • Play frisbee

By: Samantha Babyer, OTS


Summer Outdoor Activities for Kids. Your Therapy Source. (2021).