Susan Berg's Activity Ideas Galore
By Susan Berg, CDP, AD,  BS(COTA/L)
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Susan Berg
Author, Activity Director
Activities Director Blog
Alzheimers Ideas
About Susan

Susan Berg has been a
healthcare professional and
educator for over 20 years. She
is the, activity director, of
many years, at Hunt Nursing
and Rehabilitation Center in
Danvers. While there, she has
gained much dementia care
and activity experience and
knowledge. She has had
special training in dementia
care and dementia activities
through the Alzheimer’s
Association and other
educational forums. Berg is the
author of Adorable
Photographs of Our Baby-
Meaningful, Mind-Stimulating
Activities and More for the
Memory Challenged, Their
Loved Ones, and Involved
Professionals, a book for those
with dementia and an
excellent resource for
caregivers and healthcare
Take a look
at Susan's book
Flash Cards are
available  to use
with Susan's Book
Note:  They can also be
used without the book
and are ideal for group
Celebrate the Summer

July is when summer activities are in full swing... Combining this with a special day
celebrated in July and special summer activities allow you to have exciting activities on
your July activity calendar.

Let’s start with “Fun in the Sun Day” First has a discussion about the sun. For
information go to

You can extend your discussion by talking about other planets in the solar system. You
can also talk about all the fun things you can do in the sun. You can talk about why the
sunlight is good for you go to
vitamin-link-to-cognitive.html  .

Have your group members see how many songs group participants can name with the
word sun in the title.

Here is a small list

  • Why Does the Sun Really Shine?
  • I'll Follow the Sun
  • Seasons in the Sun
  • Here comes the Sun
  • Sunday, Sunday
  • I got the Sun in the Morning
  • Soak up the Sun
  • Blister in the Sun-
  • Away from the Sun-
  • Sun is Shining-
  • Down Came the Sun-
  • Walking on Sunshine -
  • Sunrise, Sunset (Fiddler on the Roof)
  • A Place in the Sun - Percy Faith  
  • House of the Rising Sun

Early clocks, called sundials, measured shadows to tell the time.

Here is an easy way to make a sundial. Use a large piece of cardstock or poster board,
and stand a stick upright in the middle of it with a piece of playdoh. Put it outside on a
sunny day. Some things you can do, depending on your location and ability to bring
residents outside are to point out where the shadow is, and then look a while later and
notice the difference in where the shadow is at that time. Write the time where the
shadow hits on the card at several times during the day. Leave the “sundial” out for
several days, weather permitting, and check if the shadow is in the same place at
approximately the same time each day. For more shadow fun go to
// .

Another thing a lot of people did during the summer was go to camp. Some families
had a campsite they would go to every year. Some people owned a cottage near a
camp ground. Some people went to summer camp when they were children. No matter
what their experience was you can have a discussion and recreate some of the fun
things people did at camp.

Many people went swimming whether they were at camp or not. You can talk about and
demonstrate different swimming strokes. Most likely you will not be able to take your
residents swimming, but pretending you are swimming is fun and good exercise.

Another thing you can do is to pretend you are rowing a boat or paddling a canoe. Sing
Row, Row, Row, Your Boat, as you do this.
You can have a game of volleyball using a balloon as the volleyball since playing
volleyball was another fun camp activity.  

Fishing is another camp and summer activity. Here is an easy to do fishing game.
You could also play the card game Go Fish, as well.
Singing is done at camp or anytime. Here are some fun summer camp songs
  • If You're Happy and You Know It
  • Do Your Ears Hang Low
  • Stay on the Sunny Side
  • Summertime
  • In the Good Old Summertime
  • Found a Peanut
  • The More We Get Together

I hope you can use some of these activity ideas in your activity program for July.
Remember to check out
Archive200907.html for more ideas.