Summer is almost upon us. Parents and children look forward to summer and it also creates some stress and anxiety with the shift from the rhythm and routines of the school year. Doing some preparation for this unique part of the year can increase everyone’s fun and decrease stress. It is important for children to have a balance of structured and unstructured time and a balance of active and quiet time. Spend time at least a little time outside with your children every day. Here are some more ideas:
- Spend some time now with your children creating a list of things that you and your children would like to do this summer. It can include things like: projects, exploration, learning, playtime, how you will handle family work together and time to connect with friends and family.
- Talk about the summer schedule. Are your children in summer school? Day care? Camp? Hanging out with friends? Doing things together as a family? Mark these on the calendar.
- Talk about the daily routine. When your children are in school, there is a helpful rhythm and routine to their day. What will the routine be in the summer? What time will you go to bed? Get up? Eat meals? When will you spend time outside?
- Have your children look for toys or games that may be forgotten in the back of their closets. Are they more interesting now? Can they be repurposed or donated to another family?
- Visit the library regularly to take out books. Join the summer reading program or find time to read or listen to audio books together as a family. Keeping reading as a regular activity will help children stay on track for school in the fall.
- Have your children set up a space where they can make projects, do art or puzzles or write in a summer journal.
- Do activities with your children: plant a garden, make a picnic lunch to eat outside, redecorate a room, cook meals, visit parks, take a walk, toss a ball. Cooking and shopping with your child can be great math activities.