I bet most of you (like me) love Summer. In a kid’s eyes, I know summer is fantastic not only because of no-school days but also because of longer days which means extended playtime. This also poses a challenge for us parents to combat our children’s boredom during this season. Every parent faces the challenge of keeping kids engaged and learning over summer break.
Thanks to Galileo Learning for sponsoring today’s discussion. There are actually a lot of (cheap, sometimes no cost) ways for us parents to do in order for our kids to enjoy summertime. Here are some ideas to keep the kids engaged and learning even during summer.
Use printables, coloring books and drawing pads to entice your kid’s art side and creativity.
My daughter, at three, likes to color printables, especially of her favorite tv or cartoon characters. This is one of our usual activities everyday. Though not all kids are inclined towards the arts, it never fails to have coloring books for younger kids and drawing pads for older ones. It is a good medium for them to be able to express their ideas and put them into works of art. (You know what? I keep everything that my daughter does) I believe in the presence of colorful pens and crayons, no kid will resist to make even just a doodle.
Set at least an hour or so everyday to color and draw with your kids, I should say it is also a form of stress reliever for us adults.
Engage your kids in your favorite activity.
‘Children are naturally nosy’. They want to be involved with whatever their parents are doing, this is one of my observations. For me, I like working in the kitchen – cooking, baking and experimenting on a lot of things (including natural cleaners and DIY cosmetics). It never fails whenever I will start working in the kitchen, Ceana immediately follows. She will get a chair and insist to “help” me with whatever I am doing. As for my husband, he is a keen guitar player and Ceana loves listening to him play. She is too young to try and play it properly yet, but I’m sure when she’s old enough she will have a go. My husband has used this as an opportunity to look at these acoustic electric guitars and try to convince me that he needs a new one, though. Ever the opportunist!
I always succumb to her plea and end up involving her in whatever I am doing, may it be in cooking dinner or baking cookies. I ask her to stir a mixture, pour out an ingredient, etc. She asks questions like why a certain ingredient needs to be added. I feel her sense of satisfaction when she sees the finish product of what we did and she feels proud to have been part of the process. I also ask her to serve what we cooked and this gives her a sense of accomplishment. Along the way, this also helps enhance her mental ability as she never runs out of “whys”.
Engaging kids in your favorite activity isn’t just going to be fun for them but also a learning experience. In addition, the precious time you spent together make lasting memories.
Utilize parks for play, picnics and other activities.
We love bringing our daughter to different parks within our vicinity. We don’t just stick with the same park everytime we go out to play since parks have different amenities. In a child’s eyes, it is like another discovery, the look on her face while exploring the amenities a park can offer…is priceless.
Also during summer, there are times when instead of staying indoors, we will pack our meals, grab a mat and head out to the park and have a picnic. I would bring a book, my husband usually his guitar, and we would spend an afternoon enjoying the sun while Ceana plays with bubbles or some of her toys. Just the simple (and free) things can really be a fun thing for kids!
Let kids play, just let them be kids
I grew up in the company of cousins. I remember playing with them from sun up until sun down. I have experienced getting bruised and was wounded a lot of times, but it all added up to the nice memories of my childhood. One of the sports that my cousins loved was airsoft, hence getting bruised sometimes. Airsoft was fun, however, I’ll wait until my kids are a little bit older before I start looking for an Airsoft Pistol at all the best prices ready to ship for them. For now, there are still a number of activities to entertain the kids. Outdoor memories really do enhance a child’s life. That is why I really wanted to promote play with my daughter, instead of her staying indoors the whole day watching cartoons on TV or on my phone.
Of course, there are some days where they get fed up with playing outside because of the weather or because they have run out of things to do. And this is where I do let them enjoy some screen time, as it is good for them to be able to experience a variety of different activities over the summer. Recently, they have been asking me more and more about playing video games. They take after other family members in this sense. But whilst their older friends and family members are enjoying making the most of these eso templar builds in the Elder Scrolls Online world, they prefer playing games that interact with them, as they are not quite old enough to play some of the more favoured games on the market like FIFA and Call of Duty. But that will come with time, I’m sure. So, enjoying screen time is something that they will be taking advantage of over the summer break.
Nowadays as parents, our tendency is to be more cautious with our children to the point that we are too strict and stiff to even let them play outside, to get dirty and sweaty. But hey, we can’t just put our kids in a cage and just watch everything happening around him. Every child should experience being carefree, running until he runs out of breath, and staying under the sun until he smells sun-kissed.
Enrol kids in Galileo Summer Camp
Galileo is a summer camp experience kids love, that has a deep and lasting educational impact parents appreciate. Armed with an innovation process inspired by the Stanford Galileo instructors facilitate campers’ hands-on exploration of science, art and outdoor activities. Behind every activity, an idea. And a mindset-visionary, courageous, collaborative, determined, reflective.
But amidst the frenzy, they also learn something with the potential to change them-and the world-profoundly. They learn how to fail. Not in a humiliating or dispiriting way. But in a self-assured way, that helps turn them into hardy, risk-taking creators and problem-solvers.
Sign up for Galileo Camps by July 13th and save $30 per camper with code 2014INNOVATION. You can check more information about summer camp programs at the Galileo page.
Remember that learning is not confined to the four corners of the classroom or the house, and that lasting memories need not be expensive…
* This article is sponsored by Galileo Learning.