Summer is a great time to introduce homesteading activities to your family. Traditional homesteading skills usually involve raising livestock, growing your own food, and being as self-sufficient as possible. Even if you live in the city, it’s easy to teach your kids homesteading skills. Grab your free great big list of 25 Free Homesteading Printables & Downloads for Kids. You’ll find a link to it at the bottom of this page.
Ready to get started? Roll up your sleeves and learn alongside your kids!
No matter where you live, you can start focusing on teaching homesteading skills with gardening. Try herb gardening for kids using a few clay pots on a window sill. Help your older kids dig a small garden bed outside your kitchen door and plant lettuce, carrots, onion, and cucumbers. This hands-on activity is great for kinetic learners.
#2. Homesteading stories
Read-aloud time together on the covered back deck on a rainy summer day is one of our favourite lazy-day summer homeschooling activities. Reading fiction books about pioneer families is a gentle way to get your kids interested in an old-fashioned homesteading and homeschooling lifestyle. The Little House on the Prairie series, In Grandma’s Attic series, and the My Side of the Mountain series were favourites of all of our kids. Younger children might enjoy Oxcart Man and Our Animal Friends at Maple Hill Farm.
#3. Canning and preserving
Learn about canning and preserving alongside your children using store-bought berries or fruit to make jams, jellies or preserves. This is a great followup activity to foraging with kids. Remember to follow safe canning practices and don’t leave younger kids unattended by a hot stove or pressure cooker. (If you’re new to canning, grab our list of 75 Homesteading Resources for adults – it includes a whole section on canning and preserving.)
Soapmaking has recently become pretty popular among the DIY crowd and is a fun summer homesteading activity for families to work on together. Although there are many different soapmaking methods, stick to something simple like this easy soap for kids recipe. Review soapmaking safety before getting started and always be mindful of little hands during the melting and heating steps.
#5. Summer farmer’s market, fair or festival
These summer family events often include contests and prizes for the best or biggest homegrown vegetable, tastiest homebaked goodies, best jams, jellies, preserves, and homestead handcraft competitions too for sewing, quilting, knitting, or other handcrafts.
This gives you and your children a chance to see the fruits of some typical homesteading activities like gardening, cooking from scratch, canning and preserving, and pioneer craft skills.
Larger fairs often have a livestock area as well and can give homeschooling families a taste of how to turn raising farm animals into teaching science.
These are just a few ideas for fun summer homesteading activities for families. For more great ideas, head over to An Off Grid Life and grab your own great big list of Free Homesteading Printables & Downloads for Kids!
Sarita Harbour is a busy mom/step-mom, and grandmother blessed with seven kids ranging from age 32 down to seven. She lives off the grid with her family in a lakefront chalet in the beautiful wilderness of Canada’s far north. She spends her days teaching, writing, and learning the ropes of homesteading off the grid. Visit her site, Off Grid Life, for free printables and resources on homesteading, homeschooling, and self-reliance for the whole family.