While it seems like summer break just started, it won’t be long before school begins again, which makes this a good time to sit down with your kids to choose a few things they can accomplish before summer ends.
Because it’s not only fun, but also important to their future, parents may want to start with setting a reading goal. Pick a couple of entertaining books kids want to read before the end of the summer break. The International Children’s Digital Library has thousands of books in multiple languages. Parents can spend time each day reading with their child to help them meet their reading goal.
There are blogging sites and apps specifically for kids. Have your child commit to blogging a certain number of times per week, writing on anything that interests them. Parents should note that, while most blogging sites can be restricted, it’s always possible your child is exposed to content of which you don’t approve, so, as always, monitor your child’s online activities.
It’s never too early to teach children the value of giving back to their community. The PBS show, Zoom, has suggestions for how kids can contribute by helping the homeless, the environment, the sick, seniors, and animals. Have your child choose one category or more in which they’d like to volunteer, and spend a few hours each week helping them reach the goals they’ve set.
Kids are often unsure and afraid because they hear ominous sounding news stories they don’t understand. Help your child feel more in control of their world by introducing them to news stories meant for kids. Suggest that your child spend a few minutes each day reading about what’s happening in the world around them.
Older kids, or younger ones with parental help, will love the treasure hunt known as Geocaching. Locate a geocache on your phone or tablet, navigate to its location, and share your experience. The adventure is in the finding, so the geocaches are left in place for others to find. Encourage your child to set a goal of finding an agreed upon number of geocaches each week.
Indoor gardening in containers is fun and easy. Kids love watching plants grow, and if they can eat what they grow, so much the better. Let your child choose the type of garden they’d like, and help them raise plants in cans, jars, bottles, or bowls.
It doesn’t matter what kids choose to do. The important thing is that they pick an activity, set a goal, and commit to reaching their goal before the end of summer. The structure and routine required to meet their goals will prepare them for the coming school year. Plus, the more goals they reach, the more rewarding and memorable their summer will be.