Every year kids greet the summertime with enthusiasm and sheer delight as it represents no obligations and carefree fun. While summer often proves to be a much-needed break for children, some parents find themselves worrying that too much free time could potentially harm them. The best way to ensure that your child has a safe summer is to plan a well-rounded summer schedule. Here are a few ways you can make your child’s summer a success, presented by The Breakie Bunch.
Encourage Them to Pick Up a Hobby or Try Something New
After the initial excitement of summer dwindles down, your child may become bored with the lack of routine or may fall victim to spending hours a day on the couch playing video games. Encourage your child to make the most out of their time off by picking up a new hobby! During the school year you may have noticed that your child’s interest peaked in an activity or two, but with their hectic schedule, they had no time to pursue it. You can even turn hobbies into a fun family business. If you and your child enjoy crafting, you can sell your crafts online. Or you can start a YouTube channel.
Now that school is over and extracurricular activities are no longer tying their hands, it’s the perfect time to learn something new! Perhaps your child would like to take an art or photography class. They may take an interest in online cooking classes and lessons, which is an excellent way to work on STEM-related skills (math). Whatever it is that they would like to do will yield positive benefits, which is why having a hobby is strongly encouraged amongst children.
In the beginning, the hobby your child chose to pick up will be challenging for them. This is good because new challenges bring new experiences. Because of their lack of experience with art or baking, they will be forced to learn through research and good old-fashioned trial and error. The fun lies in the journey of them learning and getting better!
As they get better at their hobby, their confidence will build, which is another benefit. Many school-aged children struggle with self-esteem and lack of confidence. Learning how to become good at something is a great feeling and it also teaches them that through hard work and discipline they can achieve just about anything! There’s no telling where this newly learned skill will take them, and it’s possible that the hobby they picked up over the summer will turn into a lifelong passion!
Communicate with Your Child
If you are a working parent or even taking care of a household, there are going to be plenty of times this summer where you will not be able to be around your child. This is when parents worry the most because it is every parent’s unrealistic goal to want to shield their child from any hurt, harm, or danger.
Sit down and have a conversation with your child about the dangers of hanging around the wrong crowd and participating in harmful activities, such as drug use. Clarify house rules and reiterate the expectations you have for your children and their behavior. A lot of times, when children don’t have enough positive activities to participate in, their curiosity leads them to make poor decisions. That’s why your goal this summer should be to keep your child as involved and active as possible.
Unfortunately even with a packed schedule, your child still may be subjected to bad influences, which is why it is necessary that you keep the lines of communication open with them and explain to them the consequences of poor decisions. Let them know that it is always best to be a leader and to never fall into peer pressure or do anything that makes them uncomfortable. Your child may not understand the significance of this type of conversation right away but as they get older, your words will prove to have immense value.
As a parent, it is completely normal to worry about your child. Even though the summer presents a lot of free time, as long as you allow your child to express themselves and have fun while learning new things, their brief break will go just fine!