Fun Ideas to get your kids excited this Summer

11 Apr

With summer vacations around the corner, children are all excited and waiting in anticipation to enjoy a month without geometry or geography on their minds.

My friend Reema isn’t quite sure whether she is looking forward to the 45 long sunny days simply because she needs to figure out how she is going to keep her three young fellas occupied.

Without the proximity of extended family or traditional social support, parents are expected to be more involved with their kids which can be very exhausting

Left to themselves kids would probably sleep in late, watch TV, go out to play (if friends are in town) or loll around on the sofa whining that there is nothing to do.

No doubt the first three are perfectly fine things to be doing, but holidays can be much more satisfying if, along with enjoyment, children also get opportunities to try out new things.

‘It can be a trying task to to think of things to do everyday,’ she says ‘and there are times I’m so tempted to give in to their wishes and allow them to be on their digital devices or watch Netflix.’

Instead of giving in to these ‘digital Nannies’ which can completely take over her childs time and attention she came up with this list of activities to keep her kids busy during the vacation.

  • Her boys are full of energy and love the beach. So she has blocked off a few days to spend on the beach building sand castles, collecting shells or simply running barefoot on the sand.
  • Another activity she is excited about is going trekking as a family. Pushing together for a common goal that’s both fun and exciting can be a rewarding experience
  • City tours on foot or bicycle along with photography is also on the list.
  • Sailing on the calm waters that surround the city was something they’ve never done and would like to try.
  • The kids have made a list of activities like doodling, painting, pottery, and drama workshops that they would like to be a part of.
  • Visiting Science museums and innovation hubs to stimulate their curious minds.
  • A fortnight long vacation with their grandparents is something the kids are looking forward to. With a well drawn family tree, the kids now know of all their cousins and uncles and aunts and are enthusiastic about meeting them.
  • Collecting Board games and sports equipment like rackets and balls for the ‘lets play’ days.
  • Her younger son is an avid reader, so joining a book club or starting one seems like an exciting activity to try out.
  • Volunteering at an NGO that is working towards a cause they care about.
  • Letting them be bored on some days; so that they learn to work through boredom.

Although most of these are planned activities, she has also left some blank spaces for the impulse driven ‘Lets do this” moments.

Vacations no doubt spell ‘Free time’ but kids do better if there is some amount of structure and routine in their lives. It helps them feel secure and know what to expect.

  • Maintain a schedule for meal time and bed time for most days. It can be tempting to allow kids to sleep late or eat whenever they please – especially coz you don’t want to get into any arguments with them; but, sticking with a bit of routine helps kids to be comfortable, feel good and hence chirpy
  • Get the kids ready for the events that are planned. Snuggle into bed with them and talk to them about what to expect the following day so they look forward to it, ask questions incase they have any anxiety about the place or people they are to meet.
  • Spend time in the evenings talking about the day that was – what they enjoyed, what part of their day was the best, what they are looking forward to, the next day.
  • Coach them on expected behavior, in the airplane, in the hotel dining areas, while the tour guide is speaking. Set behavior expectations but also tell them why you set them so that kids learn to regulate their behavior.

Children have worked hard through the school year and deserve some down time to relax, recharge and refresh themselves.

Make the most of this time to connect and create memories while learning and having fun

 

 

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