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30 Family Activities for Teens (that they’ll actually enjoy!)

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Let’s face it activities for teens aren’t the same as when they were kids. The reality is that “playtime” changes when our kids become tweens and teens.

Gone are the days of playground dates and exciting afternoons spent building with lincoln logs and magnetic blocks.

But the days of play aren’t gone. They have just changed.

Playtime with older kids looks more like getting out of the house; seeing friends; and spending time with parents who are willing to listen, talk, and enter their world.

We must continue to make space for playtime with our older kids. Though it is probably time to stop calling it “playtime.” HA!

Fun activities for teens and their parents

Activities for Teens: AKA Big Kid Playtime

It can be hard to watch our creative little ones become screen-obsessed teenagers. And sometimes it happens so quickly that we aren’t prepared for the change.

One day the house is a creative disaster and the next day all of the building toys are sitting untouched and our newly minted tween or tween is “bored” all of the time. It’s all part of the parenting season transition as little ones begin to grow up.

But with some planning and creativity, parents can introduce fun activities for their teens. And many of these ideas are perfect for parents to participate in the fun.

30+ Fun Family Activities for Teens

Card games. Dice games. Board games. Stock up on some fun ones for your tweens and teens.

Hit the coffee shop. Sit and chat. Consider playing a card game.

Plan a day trip or a weekend adventure with a few friends.

Take hammocks to the lake with a few good books.

See a movie in the middle of the day.

Check out a unique art display at a local museum.

Watch a live gaming competition.

Head to the theater for a live performance.

Attend Comic-Con or a similar gathering in their niche.

Organize a book club for your child and their friends. You could also organize one for parents and teens together. (Need some inspiration? Check out a few of ours.)

Enjoy a workout together. hit the gym. go for a run. kayak, hike, or bike.

Play video games together. Teach them your favorite. (I bought Tetris for the PS4.) Learn theirs.

Learn Fortnite dances. Break into them randomly.

Take a class. art. pottery. yoga.

Watch a season (or more) of their favorite show with them. Quote lines regularly for laughs.

Make a playlist for an upcoming vacation. Everyone pick 5-8 songs.

Go bowling. Try a midnight bowling or rock and bowl.

Plan a potluck lunch at a local picnic area with friends.

Learn a new hobby or skill together: candle making, knitting, sewing, or lettering.

Plan a scavenger hunt at the mall. Moms vs. Kids. Or let the kids loose. (Check out my Christmas version.)

Build something together. a computer. a wood project. a patio.

Go camping. (Check out my Outdoor Adventure Essentials for Kids)

Break free from an escape room.

Host a murder mystery party.

Jump at a local trampoline gym. Invite their friends. Join in with the kids!

The best activities for teens

Hike to a local river or swimming hole.

Ride roller coasters at a theme park. Consider a season pass for fun all summer long.

Relax around the fire pit. Tell stories. Roast marshmallows.

Experience the symphony, the ballet, or the opera.

Go tubing down the river.

Cook together. chop. bake. roast. fry. Try some unique recipes and experiment.

Print photos and make a family collage.

Attend a sporting event. Check your local colleges for a less expensive alternative to professional sports. (We had a great time at a college gymnastics meet.)

Go to a concert for their favorite musician or band.

Have fun. Be creative. Enjoy making memories with your teen!

More resources for parenting teens:


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  1. I love this. You’re totally right that it can get tricky to find ways to play together after they grow out of matchbox cars. I’ll definitely have to share it with my little email group!

    Thank you so much for sharing!

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