Traditionally it’s time to look forward to kids getting out of school, a nice break from summer routines, sleeping in (you and them, if possible), if you don’t work – planning summer days and other activities, and if you do work, planning other activities and checking on your kids by text or phone a few times a day, or maybe more!
Here are some helpful tips on what you can do this summer to keep them busy:
Post a big visible handwritten calendar so kids can see activities, birthdays, upcoming vacations, or camps or holidays (like the 4th of July).
There is a new trend (started by a mom who lives in a suburb of Dallas) to put a turquoise table in your front yard to chat with neighbors. Great idea to paint a table and hang out there with your kids for a bit each day to see who comes by!
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that children and adolescents should get at least 60 minutes or more of physical activity each day, including those that vigorously promote aerobic exercise. So bring out those bikes and hula hoops, scooters, balls and bats and skateboards (helmets and knee pads too) and get everyone moving! This will make for better downtime and rest.
Have kids get a super short haircut for summer/ easy fun and kids can run fingers through “flat top” hair!
Make "Instruments in a box" Compile a tambourine, an old guitar, drums or other instruments, your kids can make up music that is playing or make up their own beat – a great fun activity.
Clean kitchen/bathroom with vinegar/lemon/ baking soda, show kids that you can clean w/no harsh chemicals, they get a kick out of the smell and accomplish cleaning a room!
Have kids read for one hour a day, great habit that will follow them the rest of their lives, in a good way!
Create an operations plan at home – go through house and demonstrate how to turn off lights, stress the importance of turning off electronics - TV, computer, kitchen electronics/appliances and demonstrate how to lock up the house before leaving and entering. Have a plan when people knock at the front door/what your family rules are. My family did this to make sure that we didn’t walk in at the end of the day to an unlocked house with all of the lights and electronics on!
Once a week (same day of the week), have kids strip their beds, bring out dirty clothes of their rooms and bring out trash to be put in the same place each week – it helps to start a good routine for life to make a commitment to clean once a week. It will help them be proud of themselves.
Great lesson from my oldest child’s second grade teacher… put on some top 40 music and have everyone dance for 10 minutes - it’s all good. You might be surprised at all of the good moves that come out!
A weighted blanket can help with downtime and longer better sleep for kids who aren’t inclined to sleep regular hours in summer – the beads run cool and the blankets are fine in air conditioning - we have many happy customer testimonials from parents of kids who are sleeping. To find out more about weighted blankets go to www.mosaicweightedblankets.com