What To Do With The Kids?
The last school lunch has been made, the last bell has rung, and school is officially out for summer. But summer can sometimes bring out the worst in our children. “I’m bored!” “What can I do?” “Where are we going?” “What are we doing?” We’ve all heard it which can slowly drive us to madness as we countdown the days for school to start back up again. But if we stay ahead of the game and get organized, we can have a fun, easy summer.
Plot it Out
Think big first and try to plot out your summer. Are you taking a family vacation? Are the kids attending any camps? If the kids aren’t attending camps, what activities can you plan to fill those days? While that thought may be daunting, fear not. The folks at care.com have plenty of ideas to offer.
Now take that general idea of what you are doing and create a calendar. Mark when everything is going to happen. You can even make it fun for the kids. Let them decorate their own calendar and put stickers on the days they get to do certain activities or create fun countdowns until the family leaves for their trip. Whatever you do, by organizing the weeks and days of your summer, you can help relieve the stress of trying to plan activities last minute.
Have a Daily Routine
Now that you have those trips/camps/activities planned ahead of time think about your daily routine and how you will incorporate those activities into your day. For instance, will you do an activity in the morning, have lunch, have some quiet time at home and end the day with another activity?
If you find yourselves wanting to be spontaneous with your activities, create a jar with popsicle sticks. Every popsicle stick can have an activity written on it. Each day someone gets to pick their activity out of the jar and if it works with the schedule then let the fun begin.
Make sure to keep the kids aware of your daily routine because kids thrive on having some structure in their day to day lives. The better prepared they are for change in the schedule, the more fun everyone will have. Whatever you choose, it is completely up to you and how active you and the family are or want to be.
Set Some Daily Rules
With routine and activities come rules. Just because school’s out doesn’t mean the rules have to go out the window. We aren’t necessarily talking about rules dictating behavior and manners, although both are important, but more guidelines of what we can do before we have fun. For instance maybe have the kids do one chore of their choice before they get to do their activity. Have them do a kind thing for another person. Have them read for 10 – 20 minutes (keep those minds strong). If you want to go bigger, have them clean out the toys they don’t play with anymore or the clothes they don’t wear. A little organization in their lives can help add more to yours. Remember it doesn’t have to be crazy, just something to help keep them in check.
Finally…remember to have fun! The days will fill up before you know it and by keeping yourself and your family organized and busy, you will enjoy your summer more than dreading it.