Part of a great coastal vacation with the family is the ability to play and relax at the beach. For parents, lounging in the sun is a way to let go of all the daily stress. For kids, a sandy beach is an open canvas, ripe for building all manner of sand creations.
An easy way to keep the kids occupied with their sand sculpting is to provide them with more than the standard plastic tools and buckets available at the local convenience store. Get creative and let your kids do the same with a few of these helpful tips.
1. Shells, Shells, Shells!
Shelling is a great way to get the excitement started. Walk along the beach and find shells and shell pieces for collecting and for decorating sand castles. Kids will love finding a variety of shells to adorn their sandy creations. The special shells can come home with you.
2. Good Sand Makes Better Castles
To build great sand creations, your sand should be a little wet. It should hold together in a ball when squeezed and mold without falling apart too easily. If your ideal spot is away from the right kind of sand, fill a bucket with water and use it to get the perfect sand texture.
3. Molds That Make the Grade
Store-bought sand castle kits aren’t super creative. Put together your own sand castle building kit with your kids. For molds, find a variety of storage bowls for sand domes, small paper cups (easy to recycle), plastic or cardboard boxes, and cut up egg cartons (for fun walls). When shelling, look for larger shells to make sea-inspired molds. Check out the variety of plastic storage boxes at any local craft store. Let their imaginations run wild.
4. Tools of all Shapes and Sizes
Just like professional sand sculptors, tools can make all the difference when crafting the perfect castle. Simple household items work great, too. Bring a pencil box filled with plastic spoons and forks, popsicle sticks, plastic dish scrapers, a spatula, small shovel, sponge, water bottles, colander, cat box scoop (unused of course!), funnel, and even pumpkin carving tools.
5. No-Mess Transportation
Collect all your items and put them into a mesh beach bag. Give it a good shake so the sand falls back onto the beach and not into the car.
Having an easy to assemble sand castle kit at the ready will let your kids explore even more creative possibilities. This will keep them occupied longer, which means more fun for them and more leisure time for you.