Are you looking after yourself whilst studying at school? Your academic learning is important for your future, but wellbeing in children, teenagers and young adults whilst learning is vital! If you’re wondering what amazing activities you will be able to enjoy with us over the Summer, take a look below! If you’re searching for ideas for yourself or your students / children, we hope to inspire you too.
100 Fun Activities: The Best Wellbeing Activities for Happy Students
Below you will find 100 fun activities that we offer at Summer Boarding Courses Summer Schools, to create happy, healthy and energised students. Every week is wellbeing week here and we believe there are two vital ingredients students need to enjoy their Wellbeing Time.
The presence, support and endless energy of our amazing mentors is invaluable. They are the big brothers and sisters of our amazing team, who care for our students around the clock. Patient, caring, motivational, inspirational and full of energy, they encourage students to make the most of their Summer with wellbeing activities.
Students can talk to our mentors for support and guidance and look up to them as excellent role models.
Our mentors create, prepare and run almost all of the social events and health and wellbeing activities throughout the day. They are true stars!
Students have a variety of choice in our wellbeing and health activities. We encourage our students to try all of them to discover new ways of playing and being creative. Choice is important. Allow your students to make their own decisions from a set number of options.
What is wellbeing?
Wellbeing for life is feeling comfortable, healthy and happy. This is not only physically but mentally too. There are many activities that you can do to improve and maintain your physical and mental wellbeing.
Health and wellbeing activities at Summer Boarding Courses
Summer Boarding Courses runs four Summer Schools in the UK. You are welcome to join us at SBC Oxford (ages 8-12), Dukes International (ages 11-15), Headington Oxford (ages 13-16) and Oxford College (ages 15-17). We have wellbeing activities running throughout all of the schools alongside our academic English programmes.
Part of our social and wellbeing at school activities is yoga! Our fully experienced and trained wellbeing yoga experts come to Oxford College to give students quality time on the mat and the opportunity to connect with their mind and body. Regardless of whether you have tried yoga before or not, this is a great chance to stretch, be mindful and release stress.
Go and see a play
If you are joining us at Oxford College, you will have the chance to see Shakespeare’s plays in Oxford and spectacular shows in London’s West End. We go and see a variety of Shakespeare’s plays in Oxford including Macbeth, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, Love’s Labour’s Lost and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
At the end of a big day out in London, we see one of the most popular shows in the West End too! This can include Wicked, The Play That Goes Wrong and Young Frankenstein.
Take on a photo challenge
Discover your new city for the Summer by taking part in a photo challenge! Through various clues and challenges, make your way through the local area, snapping taking picture of specific locations and you completing different tasks! It’s the perfect activity to get to know each other, work as a team and discover a new location.
We love music and we love to dance! Why not take some time to get on the disco floor and exercise simultaneously? In the evenings, our students have the chance to dance and enjoy expressing themselves through music.
Go on a nature walk
Summer Boarding Courses run from some of the most prestigious school locations in the UK. SBC Oxford (ages 8-12) is located at the famous Dragon School in Oxford, which is set in 15 acres, spreading along the River Cherwell and just a 15-minute walk from central Oxford. With extensive sports fields, an indoor swimming pool, dance studio and 12 tennis courts, it is a great location to explore!
Dukes International Summer School, located at the prestigious Canford School near Bournemouth, is set in 300 acres of picturesque grounds on the banks of the river Stour. The perfect place to discover nature!
Headington Oxford (ages 13-16) is at the prestigious leafy green Headington School in Oxford: one of the UK’s top boarding schools. The grounds are vast with tennis courts and an indoor swimming pool, with plenty of nature all around for students to enjoy on a nature walk.
At Oxford College (ages 15-17), the stunning historic locations of Wycliffe Hall and St Hughs are perfect for connecting with nature. Both colleges have peaceful gardens where students can relax and be mindful, and Oxford University Parks is just around the corner!
A classic English sport: football! If you want to do more than play football in your wellbeing time, you can learn English through football at Dukes International!
Create your own story
Draw inspiration from what is around you and decide how you would like to create your story. Will you do a short picture book story, a play or maybe a long form masterpiece? Have fun with the characters and plot and enjoy expressing your ideas through storytelling.
Experiment with clay
Maybe you would like to try making some pottery or observe who is around you and create a 3D portrait for a friend. You could make some jewellery such as a pendant, or have fun making decorative items for your room. You can also study English further whilst focusing on Art and Design through our English Plus+ courses!
Put on your own play
Students can study English through Acting at Dukes International (which is a lot of fun!), but in our wellbeing programmes there are plenty of opportunities for students to use props and costumes to make their own stories and shows.
Go horse riding
Spending time with horses can be very therapeutic. Horse riding will teach you how to care for others whilst improving your posture, balance, core strength and mental wellbeing. Students at Dukes International and SBC Oxford can try this!
Make your own decisions during free time
For our students at SBC Oxford who are growing into young adults, we want to encourage them to make their own decisions by having their own free time in Oxford. They can choose to do whatever they wish during this time in their wellbeing action plan. We find that our students like to go shopping, explore more of the city, eat their favourite foods, buy souvenirs and relax in the park. This is also a great chance for them to practice their timekeeping skills.
Visit a museum
With three out of our four Summer Schools running in Oxford, Summer Boarding Courses makes the most of the city by visiting its museums! The Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology is a firm favourite with our students. We also recommend the Pitt Rivers Museum and History of Science.
Basketball is great for your entire body and your teamwork skills. Play this competitive game with friends to build your bones, strength and motor skills, whilst improving your space awareness and confidence.
Students at Dukes International and Headington Oxford can explore more of the UK by having a great day out in the Roman city of Bath. Famous for its natural hot springs, students will be able to enjoy the city’s 2000 year old history whilst exploring its architecture. There will also be the chance to enjoy some shopping at some special independent shops. We recommend you try Bath’s unique mineral water before you leave.
Play the drums
Playing a musical instrument increases your memory, coordination and comprehension! We have musical instruments in each of our schools, and love to run drum workshops to bring the world of beats to our wellbeing for kids sessions!
Ride a bike
For all the adventurous thrill seekers out there, we have plenty of adventure activities to challenge you. Why not try riding a bike?
Try a quiz
A great way for the students to get to know each other and to also find out more about their mentors is to run quizzes. Sometimes the mentors set the questions. Sometimes the students do. Students work in teams and combine their knowledge to try and get the most points in each round to win prizes. There are lots of different round themes you can run. Try asking questions about countries, music, food and current affairs!
Eat your favourite food
We ensure that our students are provided with three nutritious meals each day. When we go on excursions, we also like to go out and eat our favourite foods. Students can enjoy some British favourites, including pizza at Pizza Express!
Watch a film
Why not relax and unwind in the evening with an age-appropriate film? We like to show our films on one of our big projector screens. Students can choose from a variety of options.
All our students have the opportunity to go on many excursions to enjoy England whilst they are with us. Depending on their specific school and interests, the highlights of the day can differ. At Oxford College, students will visit London attractions attached to their studies, such as the House of Commons, the Tate Modern and the Royal Courts of Justice.
Celebrate your successes
Our students at Oxford College have the opportunity to experience what college life will be like in a UK university, and by coming to Summer Boarding Courses, they will be able to celebrate the end of their experience with us at the graduation party! We recognise everybody’s achievements, eat a delicious dinner in a beautiful setting, and give our students the opportunity to reflect on their experience and say farewell. Make sure you give yourself time to reflect on your successes and celebrate what you have achieved!
Spend time with other cultures
You will meet so many different cultures at Summer Boarding Courses. We ensure that there is a mix of nationalities in each school, by applying a cap to how many students we accept from each nationality. Your ideas and expectations will naturally be questioned and you will see people do things differently to how you do them. We encourage students to share their ideas and thoughts with each other throughout their Summer experience and wellbeing time helps greatly with this.
All students at Summer Boarding Courses have the opportunity to go swimming. Swimming is excellent exercise: it increases your endurance, builds muscle and is a great stress reliever.
Put on your own fashion show
Let your inner fashion designer shine bright by being part of a fashion show. Use recyclable materials that others are not using, or purposely buy art and craft materials to make your outfits. Put on a show to present your creations to everyone in your class!
Make your own t-shirt
Wellbeing activities are just as much about arts and crafts as sporting activities. An easy activity to do is to make your own tie-dye t-shirt. Buy a white top, some tie-dye materials, and create your very own unique design!
Discover fascinating facts about Oxford
Oxford City has a prestigious history, with plenty of fascinating facts to discover! At Oxford College, students can venture through the cobbled streets, see the most famous architecture and historical locations, and unearth facts that are surprising and unexpected! We discovered hidden details about C.S. Lewis, Harry Potter and the rival competitions between colleges. If you are joining us next Summer at Oxford College, this wellbeing activity will certainly be available.
Discover a castle
Students at SBC Oxford have the opportunity to visit Warwick Castle and students at Headington Oxford are able to visit Royal Windsor; the family home to British kings and queens for over 1,000 years!
Learn to knit
Learning to knit is a great skill to have, but also a skill that allows you to meditate and relax! Once you get into the rhythm of it, you can enjoy making new items for yourself and friends, whilst having the time to reflect and restore.
Squash is the perfect sport to really get your heart pumping! You will be running, diving and leaping for that ball and quickly improve your coordination and reflexes.
Read a book
There’s nothing quite getting lost in a book. It expands your imagination, opens up new worlds to you and helps you create new ideas in reality. There are plenty of amazing books to choose from at Summer Boarding Courses. Our mentors offer up their own favourite books and recommend them weekly to our students. These books can also be won as prizes!
Take some time out during your day to enjoy the silence. You do not have to meditate for long; even a minute of meditation, where you try to block out the noise, can be incredibly helpful for your mental health. Our meditation is incorporated into our yoga sessions, as well as our nature walks and time in the park.
Try and get the opposing team ‘out’ by throwing a dodgeball at them! To make things more difficult, you can also get an opposing team member out by catching one of their throws at you. A team wins when all of the other team is out, or you have more players at the end of a 2 minute game!
Try circuit training
Take your wellbeing fitness to the next level. Try and mix up some of the following exercises to create your own circuit training session: burpees, tuck jumps, squats, high knees, jumping jacks, planks, skipping on the spot and lunges. We like to do out circuits outdoors if the weather permits!
Play a board game
Not all of the best games are on your PC or mobile phone. Try some classic board games with your friends. Our favourites are Scrabble, Chess, Cluedo, Scattergories, Checkers and Operation.
Go to the zoo
If you’re joining us at SBC Oxford, then you can enjoy a visit to Cotswold Wildlife Park; one of the UK’s largest zoological collections. Cotswold Wildlife Park supports a thriving education programme, is a key part of endangered species breeding programmes and works with conservation projects in the wild. When you visit, you will be able to see not only a variety of animals but the beautiful gardens too!
For a truly quintessential British experience during your wellbeing and wellness time, we recommend going punting! Popular in both Oxford and Cambridge, it’s the perfect opportunity to slow down and focus on moving forward with that pole down the tranquil river.
Run your own mini olympics event
With a few items, you can create your own mini olympics event. Set up different game stations and put students into different teams. Teams must compete against each other at the different stations to see who wins. You could do a balloon race relay, a hula hoop competition, a running competition, a wheelbarrow race and a throwing challenge.
Make the best paper airplane
Summer Boarding Courses love a good challenge. Using science, imagination and creativity, you can set a goal to create a paper airplane that has to fly so far, or hit a certain target. What are you going to create in your wellbeing time?
Throw a frisbee
It’s not too difficult and something that requires a friend to play with. Try playing frisbee to improve your coordination and reflexes!
Build the tallest tower
Can you build the tallest tower out of all the teams in your class? Put your engineering skills to the test! You may only have spaghetti sticks and blu-tac, cardboard boxes, straws or only paper. Have fun being creative and working together with your team.
A bingo game can be as simple as calling out numbers. Yet there are many variations of bingo. Students can play together in pairs, where they have to ask each other a question in order to tick off a particular square. Or you could have charades bingo, where your partner has to guess what action you are doing for you to win that square. Be creative and make up your own bingo games.
Discover a new place before going there
Students in Oxford College have their own free time to go out and explore in Oxford city and also on the excursions we go on across England. We encourage them to research the areas they are going to beforehand online, so that they can find activities and sights they are interested in. Make the most of your free time by planning ahead.
Try and build a bridge
We love a challenge at Summer Boarding Courses. How about trying to build a bridge to support a particular object? This could involve materials such as spaghetti, marshmallows and kinder eggs. Be creative, think out of the box, and try and build the strongest bridge you can.
Make sure you have a net and a volleyball, and you’re set to have a great game! Volleyball improves muscle strength, reflexes, balance and hand-eye coordination.
Create a podcast
Blogging, vlogging and podcasts are incredibly popular today and a great way to share your thoughts, ideas and news. Creating them are so much fun. How about setting yourself the goal of documenting a day out, or interviewing someone who inspires you? Tell your friends and share what you have created.
Solve a crime mystery
With your friends, take on roles in a crime mystery game and work together to try and solve who committed the crime and why. Maybe the class mascot has gone missing or there’s a magical book missing from the library. Use your imagination. One Stop English have some excellent resources to help you out.
Have fun with science experiments
Do you want to make edible amber fossils, explore surface tension, make a hovercraft or understand the science of fireworks? There are many fun and safe activities you can try together to bring out the scientist and explorer within you. Find plenty of ideas here!
Play table tennis
Fast-paced, precise and a great sport for your focus and reflexes, put table tennis on your wellbeing ideas list!
Go to the roller disco
Exercise and great music at the same time: perfect! Put on your roller skates and try and skate around the room as you listen to the latest hits.
Paint a picture
We encourage our students to paint what they wish during their freestyle art time. Maybe you have a picture inside your mind, or you are taking inspiration from the environment in front of you.We have the materials to help you create what you wish.
A UK port city, home to the famous street artist Banksy, and a major part of England’s maritime trade history; Bristol is a buzzing, multicultural city. Our students at SBC Oxford, Headington Oxford and Oxford College have the chance to explore the city.
Go to a zumba class
For students seeking a high-energy physical activity and wellbeing exercise, Zumba is an excellent choice. The music is great and the moves so much fun. We ensure that we invite the best qualified teachers to instruct us. If you are coming to SBC Oxford, Zumba class is on your wellbeing options list!
Go on a scavenger hunt
Use your mind, body and teamwork skills to work your way through various levels of puzzles and clues to get to your final destination in a fun and clever scavenger hunt! A hunt is easy to organise and a great way to get outdoors and have fun exploring. We like to test our students and run scavenger hunts to keep them on their toes.
Play tag rugby
Try a non-tackle, minimal-contact version of rugby with tag rugby. Set up two teams and try and score the most trys by placing the rugby ball on or over the try line of your competitors’ side of the field.
Go to a theme park
Calling all thrill-seekers! Do you enjoy riding roller-coasters and experiencing twists and turns? Summer Boarding Courses takes its students at Dukes International and Headington Oxford to Thorpe Park in their summer school experience.
Ready, steady, go! Students have the choice of taking part in a multi-activity programme or choosing an English Plus+ option on two afternoons per week for an additional cost at SBC Oxford, Dukes International and Headington Oxford. English Plus+ options include adventure sports, horse riding, drama, art and design and dance. As part of our adventure sports option, go-karting is included.
Run a talent show
Can you sing, dance, read poetry, juggle, tell jokes or act out a scene? We all have a talent. Show yours by taking part in a talent show with us.
Get creative with a Polaroid camera
It has become popular at celebrations and festivities to have an area set up with some props and a polaroid camera to have fun taking photos. Use your creativity with your friends, dress up, use the items in novel ways, and create your own polaroid snap shots!
Cook a delicious meal
Experiment with new ingredients, flavours and textures by cooking something new! Or for your mental wellbeing, you may like to cook the dish that you love from your country to share with your new international friends.
Home to the prestigious University of Cambridge, Cambridge is a fascinating city to go to and explore for the day. We take our students at Oxford College here for the day and it is a lot of fun! We go punting along the river Cam, and get to see and hear about King’s, Trinity and St John’s as we float on by. Then we take a guided walk through the city to discover more historical landmarks, then enjoy the city at our own pace in free time.
Sing a song
Singing has been proven to strengthen your immune system, improve your posture, help you sleep, lower stress, be a natural anti-depressant and help you bond with newfound friends. Sing your favourite songs!
Really put your mind to work by playing a game of chess! We have chess boards across our summer schools, some of which are very large and require your whole body to move the pieces! Chess is excellent for your IQ, memory and creativity, exercising both sides of your brain at the same time.
Enjoy a BBQ
Enjoy the summer outdoors and some good food by having a BBQ. Cooking and eating together is a great activity to get to know people better and discuss your interests.
How about a game of ten pin bowling to take some time out from studying and work? Exercise your coordination, lunge those legs and aim that ball for the centre!
Enjoy challenges on inflatables
How about having lots of fun on inflatable games? At SBC Oxford, students take on Challenge Day, where they play various games on inflatables in teams to win points! It’s one of our favourite 8 to 12 year old activities. There are plenty of challenges to try, including trying to throw balls in nets through soapy suds!
Try and draw something you have never tried to draw before, or draw whatever comes to you when you put the pencil to the page. Draw a friend, or the nature around you. Or take a walk and draw what inspires you along the way.
Try Laser Quest
Catch your opposing team out with your laser to try and get the most points, whilst avoiding their lasers in return!
Have a lip sync battle
How well do you know your songs? Can you lip sync to them like a pro? Try battling with your friends to be the best performer you can be.
Write a poem
From a sonnet and a limerick to a haiku, be creative and express yourself through a poem. Take the time to think and reflect, and create something for yourself or a poem you can share.
Make something useful out of recyclable materials
Plastic bottles, cardboard boxes, food trays and reusable bags. There are plenty of materials we can use to make something completely new with a different purpose. Think out of the box and see what you can create from recyclable materials.
Play capture the flag
Make two teams and claim some space outside or inside which is a large rectangle that both teams can fit in. Place a flag at each end of the pitch: these are each teams’ flags, which are in each of their territories. The goal for each team is to try and steal the other team’s flag, without being tagged by the opposing team. If a team member is caught, they have to stand still until a member of their team comes to rescue them by touching them on the shoulder. If they get the other team’s flag back into their own territory, without being caught, they win!
Enjoy Brighton and Bournemouth
Just 60 minutes from London, Brighton is a vibrant, dynamic and exciting city that makes a great day out at the beach. Discover the Royal Pavilion, independent shops, street art, beach front and creative vibes! With stunning scenery, beautiful gardens and a chance to build a sandcastle, take a trip to Bournemouth beach too.
Listen to music
Music changes and enhances our mood, lowering stress and improving our energy levels. Listen to your favourite songs or experiment with a different genre to your usual choice. We enjoy listening to music at Summer Boarding Courses and there are plenty of opportunities to do it.
Play 10 questions
A great way to break the ice with new friends, and also to get to know established friends better, is to play 10 questions. It’s one of our favourite 10 minute team building activities. In your class, you each write a question that you would like to ask each other, and then combine these questions together. You can show them all on a projector. With a timer, you line up in two lines and face each other. Every time the bell rings on the alarm (1 minute), one line takes a step to the left so that they find themselves with a new partner. They can then meet and talk to someone new, and find out more about their class.
Play a game of rounders
Grab a bat and a ball and play a game dating back to the 1500s in England! Students place themselves into two teams and take turns batting and fielding. A point is scored when a player completes a run around 4 bases in a circle without being caught out. The opposing team can get the player out by catching the ball when it is hit by the batter or touching one of the bases before the batter gets to it.
With so many independent and curiosity shops in the cities we visit on our excursions, our students enjoy buying unique gifts for themselves and their family in England. Food and clothes are usually at the top of our students’ lists! Our Oxford College particularly like to buy a University hoodie. Treat yourself with the hard work you have done, and buy something nice for yourself.
Write a compliment for a friend
Tell a friend a compliment by writing it on a piece of paper and leaving it in an envelope for them. This is a really nice wellbeing exercise to share with others and to reflect on your time together in Summer School.
Go wall climbing
For all English Plus+ students who choose to further their English study through the Adventure Sports option, wall climbing is available! Wall climbing improves your muscle strength, stamina and endurance and works out many muscles, including your fingers, back and legs!
Play table football
Use your reflexes and play a game of table football! Score as many goals as you can; you just have to be quick!
Take a walk in the park
Make the most of the sunshine over the British Summer by taking a walk in the park and enjoying the nature around you. England’s parks are very beautiful. Summer Boarding Courses makes the most of them. Bring walks in the park into your wellbeing programme!
See a free street performance
On our excursions to London, there is a chance that you will be able to catch a free street performance! Performers regularly show their skills off to the public along Embankment and in Covent Garden. Make the most of your time in the capital city and see what is happening outdoors!
Try face painting
Imagine your favourite characters or scene, then try and recreate it with some face paints! Your ideas could include recreating a tiger, butterfly, fox or night-time scene.
Make origami stars
Make an origami star and choose your difficulty level! You can start with a 4-point star and gradually work your way up to a 16-point star! All you need is some paper and some patience.
Try an obstacle course
Encourage thinking and problem solving with an obstacle course. Crawl under chairs, jump in and out of hula hoops, throw balls into a bucket, do jumping jacks and try and make your way through ropes without touching them. These are just a couple of ideas that you can use to create your own obstacle challenge.
Take some sketching materials such as pencils, pastels or charcoal and some paper to take some time out and sketch. The picture does not have to be ‘perfect’ – sketch quickly and freely to try and capture the moment.
Try and build a raft
Students who also choose Adventure Sports as their English Plus+ option have the chance to build a raft too! It’s a great team-building activity and helps students think carefully about how they can build a boat which is going to stay afloat and serve its purpose.
We all too often forget to do one of the most important and simplest things for our health and wellbeing. Make sure that you drink water! Keeping hydrated throughout the day will help your focus and energy levels and keep you happy and alert!
Have you played croquet before? Try hitting a ball with a mallet through a hoop placed in the ground. If you are familiar with playing golf or hockey, croquet is similar. Try it with newfound friends at one of our summer schools.
Try some British foods
What comes to mind when you think of traditional British food? You can try fish and chips, Shepherds Pie’, baked beans, pie and mashed potatoes and hash browns!
Hang out with your mentors
If you are looking for a wellbeing coach, look up to our mentors. We mentioned them at the beginning of the article and have to mention them again! Our mentors are such an important part of our students’ English Summer School experience. Mentors are available 24/7 to support, encourage, look after and listen to our students. They are the big brothers and sister of the SBC Team, and love to spend wellbeing time with you.
Split Splat game
Wake yourself up and really get your mind working with this fast-paced game that you can play with friends. It develops quick thinking and concentration very quickly. Make a circle and choose someone to stand in the middle who is the ‘splatter’. Randomly, they must point to someone in the cirlce and say ‘splat’. That person must duck, then the two players on either side of the ‘ducker’ must ‘splat’ each other by pointing and shouting ‘splat’ at each other.
If you’re the last one to say ‘splat’ out of the pair, you must sit down. The ducker can then stand up again. The game continues until there are two people left. You can play rock, paper, scissors at this point to decide who is will stand in the middle and be the splatter. The game sounds easy, but you will have to be quick!
Invent your own parachute
Calling all budding engineers! Can you create a parachute that will safely carry an egg and allow it to land without being broken? It’s brilliant to see what our students come up with when they put their minds to it. See what you can do too.
Grab a racquet, shuttlecock and net, to play a game of badminton! Hit the shuttlecock back and forth over the net, and try and score a point by getting the shuttlecock to land on your opponent’s side of the net.
Make friendship bracelets
With plastic or natural thread, beads, little gems and trinkets, make your own friendship bracelets in your wellbeing time. Choose your favourite colours and styles, and start making a thoughtful piece of jewellery for yourself or your friends.
Have an afternoon tea
Have you had a cup of English tea and a scone with jam and cream yet? Depending on what part of Britain you from, locals will argue about whether it is jam first then cream on the scone, or vice versa. We encourage you to try both and make up you own mind on what is best! Afternoon tea is a true English tradition. Enjoy!
Sign up for Summer Boarding Courses 2019
Coming to one of Summer Boarding Courses International Summer Schools is a once in a lifetime experience. We run four different Summer Schools across prestigious schools in the UK. Improve your wellbeing, international friendships, independence and worldly knowledge, whilst taking your English to the next level with us.
To make a booking for 2019, contact us directly here.
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