We know it can be quite challenging to fill all those summer hours with your child. We also know that the challenge to maintain a structured environment can be extremely difficult. That is why we have developed the following tips to assist you in this endeavor:
- Communicate & prepare your child for the summer changes: Introducing a new routine can be challenging, so that is why we recommend that the transition be as smooth and as similar to their school routine as possible: getting up, eating breakfast, brushing their teeth, getting dressed to go out, etc. You may also include specific times of the day for planned activities, such as lunch, playing with friends outdoors, and even attending a new setting. Always have the preferred toys that your child enjoys most and provide access to them as part of this “new” routine.
- Provide social opportunities: Since your child will have much less interaction with peers during the summer months, we recommend that you keep in touch with his/her school friends and schedule play dates, take them to parks, do outdoor activities, and board game afternoons/nights to motivate your child for peer interactions.
- Consider Summer Camps: Unfortunately, we couldn’t hold our Summer Camp this year, but there are many camps available in our area that will offer similar summer activities and opportunities. If you didn’t plan ahead, we know that some are accepting late registrations, so hurry!
- Make a Summer calendar: Since our kids are used to their “unchanging” school routine, consider having a summer calendar with pictures to show the different activities that they will be enjoying during these months. This way, your child can refer to it and anticipate what activities and events are coming up. Include vacations and prepare them before the trip too!
- Set some summer goals: Whether you want to work on a particular skill but haven’t found the time to do so during school, now is the time! Chores such as eating habits, toileting, and helping make the bed can be taught with the goal of promoting independence.
Remember to consider what works best for your family as you plan your summer adventures and to always have fun!