Keeping it Cool, and Safe!

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Summer sure is fun, but remember to play it safe whether you blow up the kiddie pool or plan a long family fun day outdoors with our expert tips.

How else can you keep it “cool” when it is so hot outside? Enjoy some water fun! But being cool also means playing it safe and maybe even learning a thing or two; read on for some water safety tips, awesome aquatic activities and more.

4 Quick Tips for Backyard Water Safety

  1. Do not allow a child to swim or play in water alone. Any amount of water can be a danger to little ones. Always designate a “water watcher,” an adult who keeps their eyes on the kids and not on their phones or other distractions. 
  2. Enforce basic rules when playing in water outdoors; whether you have a water table, kiddie pool, above ground or in-ground pool, running around wet areas is a major no-no. 
  3. Water safety and sun safety go hand-in-hand. Be sure to apply (and reapply) waterproof sunscreen throughout the day, even if it is cloudy. No one likes to miss out on more fun because they have a sunburn, so take simple precautions to stay safe. 
  4. Take a break! Remember to hydrate, eat a snack and get a little rest. It is easy to lose track of time when playing outside on a pretty day; set a phone alarm as a reminder to simply take a break from the heat. 

Splash, Learn and Play

Water learning can be fun in the sun for children. Little ones will love playing and learning with the following water activities:

-Play a rousing game of “Will it Float” with toddlers in a kiddie pool or by using a big bucket; simply choose an item, hypothesize whether it will float or sink when placed in water and get to experimenting. 

-School-age children will definitely enjoy a visual lesson on fractions – simply bring out measuring cups to play with in water, discussing halves, thirds and fourths of a whole. 

-Get scientific! How many cups of water will it take to fill a bucket? Use that knowledge to hypothesize how many ½ and then how many  ¼ cups of water it would take to fill that same bucket. Extra challenge – how many tablespoons and teaspoons would it take? Discuss which method fills the bucket quickest and which method took the longest. Have two children, two buckets and two sets of measuring cups? Make it a race to see who can fill their bucket first! Science sure is fun. 

Cool it, in Style

Who doesn’t like to take a dip when the weather is warm? Minnidip inflatable pools fit up to three adults (or a bunch of kids!) and feature designer trends! Cool kids will adore the bright sprinkle donut, watermelon and lemon designs while parents will appreciate the ease of assembly and lack of maintenance. Available at Target; visit minnidip.com for more information.  

Classic Characters Cooling It!

Everyone loves a day at the pool, even our favorite story time characters. Check out these terrific tales featuring beloved children’s book characters swimming! Better yet? Read these stories poolside. 

Froggy Learns to Swim by Jonathan London

Maisy Learns to Swim by Lucy Cousins 

Pete the Cat: Scuba-Cat by James Dean

Splish, Splash, Splat! by Rob Scotton

Curious George Goes Swimming by H.A. Rey

All books listed, and many other summer selections, can be ordered at Blue Manatee Literacy Project’s online store (bluemanatee.org), simply select “in-store pickup” at checkout and Blue Manatee will call when all items have been delivered to the store and are ready for pickup. Blue Manatee is located at 3094 Madison Road, Cincinnati, Oh; call 513-257-0774 for more information. Check out more of our favorite books for your kids’ summer reading here

Amanda Ciani lives in Northern Kentucky with her husband and their three terrific sons. She enjoys writing haiku parenting poems for her Instagram account (@cinciciani), and Twitter account (@haikuciani).

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