Bucket List for Kids: 101 Things to Experience in Childhood
What should your child do, see or experience before he or she turns 18? Metro Parent assembled this essential kit, with the help of southeast Michigan parents.
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76. Make – and lose – a friend.
77. Write a story or song.
78. Go to an old-school roller skating rink.
– Pamela Jamieson of Grosse Pointe, mom of two, ages 10 and 8
79. Build a fire. Preferably with bramble and matches.
80. Experience a power outage in the evening during a summer thunderstorm – complete with candlelit board games and flashlights.
– Suzy Cody of Macomb Township, derby girl and aero engineer, mom of Lance, 7 and Roman, 5
81. Have a "moment" on stage, wherein the prep work of rehearsal, team building, memorization and other elements of creativity come to fruition in that fearful moment of performance in front of your peers and others.
– Ben Hubbard of Ann Arbor, dad of 22-year-old twin boys (one started with Ann Arbor Young Actors Guild in 1998)
82. Go on a boat trip. Bring bait-and-tackle and fish – or latch gear onto the back for a water-skiing/tubing ride.
83. Accept – and execute – a dare, double-dare or, best of all, triple-dog dare.
84. Experience one unplugged weekend. Take away all the cell phones, video games and the television. Spend time with your kids walking along the beach or through the woods, looking for birds, gazing at the stars. Once your kids get over the initial withdrawal, they will discover a whole new world.
– Denise Semion of Plymouth Township, with Huron-Clinton Metroparks, mom of John Mogos, 29 and Greg Mogos, 20
85. Sell lemonade to your neighbors.
86. Learn that manners are more than "please" and "thank you," but the way you treat people.
87. Have a spontaneous dance party at home. Those make for great family memories and plenty of laughs.
– Erika Bonet-Bonk of Chesterfield, hula dancer, mom to Madelaina, 7 and Tyler, 6
88. Bask in quiet time. It allows them to get centered and better hear their inner voice with clarity.
– Janet Mullings, OB/GYN with St. John Providence in metro Detroit and mom of two
89. Take a road trip with car games like "I Spy" or finding the letters of the alphabet along the way by way of billboards, license plates, road side restaurant signs, etc. – and sing-alongs. The whole experience of packing for the trip and looking at a map for major landmarks is a fun way to travel.
– Sandra van Meek, Birmingham; daughter is 4, son is 2 (they make frequent road trips to NYC, where her husband is from)
90. Learn to give a sincere compliment when it strikes you and how to receive one with grace and humility.
91. Want something but not get it.
92. Have an experience with death – whether a person or pet, direct or indirect. With guidance, it can teach kids about the cycle of life and healing.
93. Fail. It's through failing that you know what success means – and that there are things that are more important than some of these dreams we have or goals we set. It's humbling.
– Eric Herman of Livonia, psychologist, Children's Hospital of Michigan, dad of 12-year-old twins
94. Visit Mackinac Island, complete with a horse-drawn carriage tour, a hike up the Fort Mackinac ramp and, of course, fudge.
95. Enjoy a fall weekend working outdoors raking leaves with their parents. Hauling leaves into a pile. Jumping and rolling in the leaves and popping out again, with bits of broken foliage and pine needles stuck to their hair.
– Lauren Larabell-Martinak, Commerce Township mom of three, ages 23, 21 and 15
96. Grasp basic geography. Know the names and locations of major countries and continents. Bonus: Master the capitals of all 50 states here at home.
97. Learn to accept when someone doesn't like you. Focus on those who do, instead.
96. Learn how to be part of a team, whether it is sports or another activity.
– Stacey Verkeyn of Pleasant Ridge, mom of two daughters, ages 10 and 7
99. Blow something up in a science experiment.
– Jennie Sue of Oakland County, mom of two boys, ages 8 and 6
100. Stay up all night and watch the sunrise.
101. Take photos. Your point of view and reference as a child is so different from an adult.
– Suzanne M. Fawaz of Dearborn, mom of a 2-year-old daughter