The Best Spring Break Starts in Your Own Backyard
It’s hard to believe that spring break is already upon us. The panic to figure out how to keep your kids – and likely their friends – entertained during their week off has begun. The good news is if you live in a place that is already experiencing warmer weather and have a backyard pool, planning an amazing spring break for your kids is simple. Save the vacation for summer, and turn your backyard and pool into an entertainment spot. Follow our tips below to get your pool surface for the season, and then add the fun.
Prepare Your Pool
If spring break is the first time you will use your pool this season it’s important to follow the proper steps for opening it.
- Clean The Pool – if you have a pool cover, clean off the top before removing it from the pool. Turn on your pump and any pool water features to get the water circulating. Start by brushing the sides and floor of your pool, use a skimmer to remove any surface debris, and run your vacuum.
- Get Your Chemicals In Check – during the winter months, it is typical for the pH level of a pool to become unbalanced. Test your water yourself or bring it to your local pool store to check the ranges and find the right chemicals to stabilize the water.
- Check The Hardware – make sure all your pool features are in good shape. Look for cracks or loose screws to see if anything needs to be fixed or replaced.
Bring the Games
Now that your pool surface is glistening, it’s time to start preparing activities to keep your kids entertained throughout the week. These popular pool games combine fun and learning and can be made with simple household items and pool toys.
- Scrabble – who said you need a board to play Scrabble? Cut up sponges into squares and write one letter on each one. Toss these letters into the pool and let each kid take turns picking a letter. Once all of the pieces are collected, see how many words they can spell. For younger children, work on letter recognition and putting the letters in alphabetical order.
- Treasure Hunt – this game will make your kids eager to flex their math skills. Grab two handfuls of spare change and toss it in the pool. Have your kids collect the coins, but the catch is they can only keep the money if they calculate the right amount.
- Ball Toss – another game with a subtle math twist. Write some numbers on the back side of five Frisbees ̶ 1, 5, 10, 15, 20 ̶ and place them in different areas of the pool. Kids will take turns trying to throwing a ball onto a Frisbee and will get the corresponding number of points for each completion. The first player to reach 100 points wins. Make things more challenging by having the kids keep score.
- Pool Raft Building – this activity has great team-building elements and can be done with older kids. Provide items like pool noodles and rope and have the kids work together to build a raft.
Pool & Sun Safety
With a group of kids splashing around your pool all week, it is important to keep safety top of mind. Make sure children are under supervision at all times when in or near the pool. If any young or inexperienced swimmers are present, have them wear floaties or life jackets and designate a responsible person to stay within arm’s reach at all times. Establish rules for safe behaviors ̶ no diving, no running, swim with a buddy, stay away from the pool water feature, etc. ̶ and be sure to enforce them.
In addition, keep sun burns at bay by following these tips:
- Use sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher. Apply to entire body 30 minutes before heading to the pool, and reappy every two hours or after swimming.
- Search for bathing suits or swim shirts that cover more skin. Opt for hats, sunglasses, and shop for high-UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) products for added protection.
- Offer shaded areas for kids to relax and play. Set up umbrellas or consider swimming early and late in the day to avoid intense sun rays.
It’s time to get your backyard ready for the best spring break yet! If you notice any cracks in your pool surface while preparing your pool or are looking to elevate your outdoor living space with a pool remodel, visit Pebble Technology International® (PTI) to find a unique and personalized pool design.