You may have felt glued to your computer or tablet during a spring of online learning and working from home. But with school finished and the weather warming, it’s time to go outside. It’s not a typical summer — there may be no camp or exotic vacations — but there’s still fun to be had. Here are a few new toys for added excitement in the backyard or nearby park.
Hog Wild Pop and Pass
This catching game ($33 at magiccabin.com) features two launchers that propel a small foam ball with the pull of the handle. Compressed air makes a popping sound as the ball shoots toward your partner. The launchers have a basket-like shape at the end that makes it easy to scoop up the ball from the ground. It’s not simple to catch, however, as the little ball can easily pop right out of your basket. Ages 6 and up.
Nerf Elite Bulls-Eye
If you have a Nerf blaster, you’re probably bouncing those little foam darts off just about everything. Instead, set up this digital target ($20 at target.com) in your backyard or driveway and up the fun. The target has three game modes and can be set for one or two players. Hit some or all of the seven small targets in 60 seconds to earn points that appear on the battery-powered digital display. Most kids will need practice to improve their aim, something that may help keep them busy for a while. Ages 8 and up.
Creativity for Kids Glow in the Dark Rock Painting Kit
Treasure hunts are big this year, as is looking for painted rocks. With this kit ($13 at amazon.com), you can create colorful objects to find on a nighttime hunt with neighbors. The kit comes with 10 river rocks, two paintbrushes, six water-resistant fluorescent paints and five glow-in-the-dark puffy-paint markers. Get a sheet of newspaper to catch spills and set up an outdoor painting station. There are no templates, so the designs are up to you. After several hours of drying, your mini masterpieces will be ready for their hiding spots. Ages 6 and up.
Stomp Rocket Blo-Rockets
Challenge a friend or sibling to see who can launch a foam rocket the farthest with only lung power. A set of Blo-Rockets ($15 at amazon.com) — a new twist on the popular Stomp Rockets — contains two handheld launching sticks that kids blow through to send foam rockets (four included) sailing through the air. Use them for target practice or catch, or dodge ’em. But, as with many toys, it’s even more fun to invent your own game. Ages 5 and up.