School is out and summer is in, but for parents the real work is just getting started. The early days of summer vacation are easy; excitement and energy flow effervescently as the kiddos find fascination in freedom and outdoor possibilities. We relish this time, for we know in just a few weeks the story will be different.
Soon the excitement seems to wane, and shouts of excitement are replaced with moans of boredom. So quickly they seem to forget how wonderful the summertime is, and they always look to us for answers and cures for the mid-summer lull. Here are a few ways I have found to help avoid this pervasive dilemma.
5 Ideas + Activities For Kids on Summer Vacation
1. Make Lists
As a mom, life seems to thrive on lists. A day without a list is potentially a day lost— at least for this homemaker. The same concept works with the kiddos, too. In fact, this is a great activity to kick off the summer. Sit down together one afternoon and brainstorm a list of all the things they want to do over the summer, such as visit the zoo, spend a day at the lake, have a water balloon fight; the list can have anything they want on it. This will help keep the kids aware of what there is to do, and will also help you get the most fun out of your summer. It is also a great way to just get excited for things to come.
2. Limit the Sleeping-in
This is certain to be an unpopular rule in the house, but will be great to help the days flow in a productive manner. I’m not saying make every morning seem like a school morning— this is your chance to relax a bit, too; however, less sleeping-in will allow for a much more efficient day with many more options. Too much sleep is often the source of the late summer lethargy, when kids seem much less active. The best part about limiting the sleeping-in is it will naturally lead to earlier bedtimes as the kid get exhausted earlier in the evening, giving you just a little bit more “me-time.”
3. Encourage Day Camps
Day-camps are great for so many reasons. They frees up time and allow you’re the opportunity to accomplish your daily tasks, while also giving the kids an opportunity to make new friends, learn new skills, stay active, and keep their minds occupied. It will be difficult for boredom to sink in with a busy and exciting camp schedule. If you work full- time during the summer, day-camps will free you from the worry or hassle of finding supervision for your kids. This truly is a win-win way to go on many levels.
4. Teach them about Community Service
Kids are never too young to learn the value of helping others. You might be surprised how many local organizations present kids with the opportunity to get involved in the community. Churches and local rec. centers are good places to look when checking for programs like these in your area. Old folks also love the company of bright young faces. Your kids will have a rich and rewarding experience, while also learning the value of helping others. Who knows? Maybe some of those new skills will show up at home as well.
5. Encourage a Family Project
This can be anything from organizing family photos, to a back yard make-over. This might sound a little intense for a lot of kids, but remember, you have the entire summer to complete it. This will give your kids the opportunity to create something within the household they can really be proud of, and will also be great for family interaction and great experience for the kids’ practical skill sets.
Summer is here, so let’s make sure it is a memorable one. There are so many great outlets for kids these days, don’t let them succumb to the potential doldrums of summer. I hope you enjoyed these summer ideas and activities for kids. Keep the home active and interactive, these are the days of making memories— so make them be the best memories possible!
Guest post by Emma Rae Curtis who loves to research and write about all things Halloween, including funny costumes, makeup, parties, and parenting.