5 No-Screen Ways to Entertain & Connect With Your Teen This Summer


If the thought of keeping your teenager socialized, exercised, and entertained over the summer has you in a tailspin, you are not alone. Perhaps you have a teen who already scheduled their summer from start to finish, and all you have to do is play the role of Uber driver. But if that’s not the case, and your teen has turned to you with the dreaded question, “So, what are we doing this summer?,” here are five no-screen ways to entertain your teen this summer.

Summer Bucket ListMake a Summer Bucket List

I’m a big fan of living like a tourist in your own town. People come from near and far to do things that you’ve never done in your city. Why not give those things a try yourself? Go to the lobby of a local hotel and find the brochures promoting adventures in your area. Let your teen pick the ones that are of interest to them and then schedule adventure days throughout your summer.

Find a Summer Job

If your teen is 16 or older (15 in some rare cases), they can get a job for the summer. I’ll admit, when I suggested this idea to my teen last year, he was not excited about it. But his tune changed when he received his first paycheck and realized that the gaming computer he’s been wanting would soon be within his reach! Encourage your teen to save their summer earnings to reach a big goal—buy a car, support a charity, redecorate their room, whatever appeals to them most. This is also a great opportunity to practically train teens how to use the bank and maintain a budget.

Explore a Creative Interest

The Dallas Community College system has campuses across the metroplex, offering continuing education courses that might meet your teen’s desire to explore a creative interest. Why not enroll in a beginner-level course in photography, video editing, graphic design, culinary arts, painting, or any number of other topics? The courses are very affordable—and if your teen gets a job, they can cover the fee themselves!

Serve The Community

Serving others doesn’t have to be formal or organized. Look for needs right on your street. Is there a neighbor who could use help with grocery pick-up? Does someone need help to maintain their lawn? Could the mom with toddlers use an afternoon play pal to distract the kids while she prepares dinner? Is there a dog who needs walking? Think outside the box (and perhaps outside your teen’s comfort zone) and see the endless possibilities to serve. There are also many non-profits in Dallas that need a helping hand.

Read and Listen to Books

I fondly recall getting lost in another world on lazy summer days as I read through a book from my summer reading list.

Happy Teen Reader

Whether it’s required reading for school or just for fun, make sure your teen spends time this summer reading good books.

If your teen is like mine, it may be a challenge to get them to read. To make reading more fun, I let my son select a book to download from Audible, and we listen to it whenever we’re in the car together. There have been times we’ve taken the longer route home so we can get to the end of the chapter. Listening to an audiobook still counts as reading a book in my book!

Bottom Line:

Whatever you do this summer, make it memorable. Take it from a mom who only has two summers left. Yes, summer days are long, but 18 summers seems way too short, and these are the ones they will remember the most. Hopefully, these five no-screen ways to entertain your teen this summer have sparked your creativity and imagination!


  1. I am right on board with the summer job suggestion. My oldest is going through the application process and my middle son, 15, is looking for a job nearby that will hire someone his age. I think, for my teens, that will help pass the summer boredom.

    Great article!



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