Amy’s Free Ideas

Read Father’s day books. This helps kids know how to celebrate Father’s Day, and to learn by example how to show Dad appreciation for all the things he does for them. If your children want to re-write the books so they more closely match their own father, then let them. They will enjoy the books more, and in years to come, you will enjoy looking at how they edited the books.

Make Dad king for a day: designate a chair to be his throne, and give him a crown (if he will wear it---make one out of paper, or buy one at a hundred yen store.) Everyone can take turns being the king’s servant--give him a bell to ring incase he wants something, like a drink, a newspaper, or a foot massage. Of course, if Dad really gets into the king role, he can command the “servant” to do something the servant would love to do--like play a board game with him or throw a ball at the park.

Serve Dad with a “special” plate at meal time. It doesn’t have to say “special” like this one--it just needs to be different from all the other plates in the house. Then honor the various members of the family with it on their special days, like birthdays, not just Father’s Day. Be sure to put his favorite foods on the plate.

Alternative method: Get a clear glass plate, and design a Father’s Day message on paper cut to fit the plate. Sandwich it between the clear plate and a regular plate for a one-of-a-kind Father’s Day plate.

Who Knows Dad best Quiz

Everyone in the family answers questions about Dad, to see who knows him best. It can include his favorite color, food, T.V. shows, books or authors, activities or entertainment, favorite sport, team, or athlete , etc. If Dad answers the same questions, his paper becomes the answer sheet. Be sure to hand out prizes to winners. You can make up the questions ahead of time, or Dad can make them up on the fly, or it can be open to anyone to shout out a question (this gives even the youngest child a chance to ask questions that he knows the answer to.)

This is Your Life

Kids put on a skit or puppet show depicting a well known event in the life of Dad. Or, if they have computer skills, make a power point about Dad’s life.

Dad Poems

Each kid writes a poem about Dad--it can be silly or heart warming, what ever each child is inspired to write. If it becomes a traditions, add them to a notebook every year. Another option is to frame each one and set around the house, to surprise Dad and please him as he moves around the house on his special day. If he is not likely to notice these, it might be better to present them to him as a gift.

Quiz Dad:

Turn the tables on Dad, and see how well he knows his own children’s likes and dislikes. We don’t want this to turn ugly, so that it looks like Dad loves one child more than another. So keep it fun, light and informal. Maybe Dad gets a prize if he can name 3 favorites for each child, or the child who gets the fewest right answers about himself gets a date with Dad, so he can teach Dad all about his favorite things. If you plan this in advance, you can make sure Dad knows all the right answers!

World’s Best Dad “contest”:

With only one contestant, there is one assured winner. Even so, each child writes an entry for why they think their Dad should win such a contest. Be sure to have a pompous ceremony to present the medal or trophy, and to read the entries, or make speeches. If it becomes an annual tradition, keep them in a notebook, and it will be fun to see how the entries change over the years.

Tell Dad stories:

Dad tells stories about his childhood or how he met mom, or what he remembers about each of the children being born, or getting into trouble. When the kids get older, they can start telling stories about Dad from their own experience, and argue about whether Dad should throw away his scuzzy old sweatshirt or whether he should keep it forever because they remember learning to read on it.

Look at photo albums or home videos

These can be of Dad’s childhood, or his fatherhood--both interest the kids a lot, especially if they are accompanied by stories. Take advantage of having other relatives around to find out the “other side of the story”--what Grandma thought when she got the postcards from camp begging her to take her son home. Or who exactly won the fight over how far you could drape an arm or leg over the edge of the bunk bed--Dad or Auntie.

Teach an old dog new tricks:

Each year, let the children choose a new challenge for Dad, and see if he can learn to do it by Father’s Day (present the challenge on Mother’s Day, perhaps). It could be shooting a basketball into a hoop, pulling a tablecloth out from under a place setting, juggling, etc. The kids can cheer or coach Dad, or if it would be more fun, join in the competition to see who can do it best.

Send cards and gifts to both grandparents:

This is a good way for parents to honor their own fathers, but if they involve their  children, it becomes a teaching tool. When the children take part in choosing the cards or presents, and wrapping and sending them, or presenting them in person, they learn what is expected of them, as well.  Showing honor, respect, love, appreciation, gratitude--these are all characteristics that are best learned by seeing them being modeled.

Treasure hunt:

Help the children hide their Father’s Day presents, then make clues for Dad to follow to try to find them. If Dad might not like this so well, keep it short and confined to one room. The kids will probably give it away anyway. Otherwise, do it all over the house, garage, and yard. If the kids really want to go big, do it all over town! You can plant clues in places where you know the people, or it can include a Father’s Day outing that takes everyone on a hike and back home again! With teenagers, a GPS tracking device would make it fun for the kids, too.

The treasure hunt depicted above was done without any help, so you can see that the clues weren’t so helpful. But i collected them all and saved them because I thought it was so cute!

Go on an adventure:

Every Father’s Day, go to one of Dad’s favorite locations--either virtually, or make a real trip. If Dad loves the beach, take a picnic to a beach. If a beach is too far away, spread a picnic out on the living room floor, and get ocean sounds to play in the background--make it as much like the beach as possible. If Dad loves golfing, but it is too expensive to take the whole family, go to a park and have Dad teach everyone how to hit a golf ball, or go to a driving range, or make a put-put golf course in your home or yard. If Dad loves fishing, plan a fishing trip. If you can’t really go fishing, dig out the wading pool, fill it with toy fish, and let everyone try to hook one with toy fishing poles.

Coach Dad:

Some Dads don’t really know how to act around little kids. If Mom can give him pointers on how to show enthusiasm for the funny little presents his children make for him. or how to adjust what he does so it is fun for the kids, it could help him relate to his children much better. But this needs to be done in a positive way, not a nagging way. Tell him that what his children really need is his time, and love and affection to develop into healthy adults. Sons imitate their fathers in even the smallest ways, and learn to be a man by watching him. Daughters need to feel loved by their fathers so they don’t go looking for “love” from random boys. Girls often choose a husband that is like their fathers. If he understands just how vital his input is for them to grow into thriving adults, he might be more willing to make the effort to have a relationship with his children. And if your ideas help both your husband and children have fun doing it, you have succeeded indeed! Children are not going to wait around forever to have conversations with their fathers. If Dad is too busy to talk to them when they are little, then they will be too busy to talk to him when they are teenagers.

Fun Things to do as a Family for Father’s Day

Father’s Day DecorationsFathers_Day_Decorations_with_a_message.htmlFathers_Day_Decorations_with_a_message.htmlshapeimage_8_link_0
Father’s Day Cards5_More_Fathers_Day_cards_for_kids_to_make.html
Father’s Day GiftsFathers_Day_gifts,_presents_for_kids,_children_to_make.html
Father’s Day DecorationsFathers_Day_Decorations_with_a_message.html

Notebook of Father’s Day Cards

Collect all the father’s day cards every year and put them in a notebook. The kinds with plastic sleeves are probably the easiest to use. Every year add more. It is fun for the kids as much as for Dad to admire their handiwork from years past. It will warm Dad’s heart to be reminded of how much his kids adore him...misspelled words and all!

Come See A Show About Dad!!

Sunday at 3:00 p.m.