Kids everywhere are saying goodbye school and hello summer.
While the kids may be super excited about the last day of school, many parents experience anxiety about keeping their children occupied during the summer months.
Help ease the transition from school to summer by following a few key tips:
1. Develop a consistent routine. While the summer naturally lends itself to a more laid back schedule, incorporating some consistency into a child’s day can be beneficial. Having predictable mealtimes and sleep times can ensure children are well-rested and well-fed. Well-rested and well-fed children are typically better behaved, better able to keep their tempers in check and better able to deal with changes in their day. Remember, free play is important too, so be sure to balanced structured activities with lots of time for free play.
2. Keep kids connected. During the summer months, help school aged children stay connected to their friends. Parents can start a Facebook page or email list for classmates’ parents, host a summer BBQ and set up weekly playdates in the park so the children can stay connected. Helping children stay connected will boost back to school confidence and help children maintain friendships over the summer months.
3. Continue learning. Providing opportunities for ongoing learning will help children keep their school skills sharp. Read to your children each day and take advantage of natural learning moments. Whether your child goes to camp, is enrolled in a formal program or you simply make a point to play board games together as a family or visit the local zoo, capitalize on opportunities for learning new skills and reinforcing established ones.
4. Stockup on summer supplies. Be sure your home is well stocked with summer supplies, like sunscreen, swimsuits, bubbles, sprinklers, proper fitting bike helmets and other items for outdoor play. Outdoor play facilitates active and creative play. Encourage children to spend time outdoors each day.
5. Schedule back to school appointments. Don’t forget to schedule back to school checkups, dentist appointments and any evaluations that are required before your child returns to school. Making your appointments early will give you an edge for getting into the doctor when you want.
While trying to entertain the children all summer can be stressful for parents, spending quality time with family can be rewarding. Focus on engaging, rather than entertaining the kids. When you do, you’ll find that you truly enjoy your extra time together.