Five Strategies for a Successful Summer Break
Written by Maggie Cerria
Reviewed by Ali Kresch Levine, PsyD
School’s out for summer and your kids are home yet again. Now what? Have no fear; with a little planning, you can create a simple summer routine that will provide structure for those long summer days. Also, setting a schedule will help your kids understand what to expect during the summer and will help avoid unstructured time which we all know can lead to unwanted behaviors like sibling rivalry and whining... sound familiar?! Here are a few easy tips to help you set up a successful summer schedule at home!
- Keep it simple - There are a ton of great summer schedule templates out there, so there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Here’s an article that includes some FREE printables that should work for your family! Choose the one you think will keep everyone in the house happy, edit it to fit your needs, print it out and you’re ready to go! Be sure to highlight important times of the day like morning, afternoon, and evening so kids can continuously check in to see what’s happening next.
- Make it FUN! - We all know kids love to have FUN! Be sure to add something new and exciting each week. Here are some ideas for fun kids’ activities to add to your summer bucket list. Also, a Goodtimer can be used with your schedule to help encourage the kids to build healthy habits, have fun, and stick to the summer schedule. They will earn Good Time when they follow the schedule and can cash in their little green tokens for incentives that they choose such as a family movie night or a picnic dinner outside!
- Learn something new - Just because school is out, doesn’t mean your kids are off the hook when it comes to learning. Turn the kitchen into a chemistry lab, or the outdoors into their classroom! Here is a list of easy recipes kids can follow to make tasty creations at home this summer. If you are looking for outdoor learning activities? Here’s a website that shares easy ways to learn about the great outdoors!
- Get your friends involved - When school’s out kids miss their classmates and would love spending time with friends from school, the neighborhood, or sports teams. Reach out to one of your child’s friend’s parents and see if they'd be willing to join you for a fun activity. Plan a play day at a local park, beach, or museum where the kids can play and the parents can catch up.
- Give yourself a break - Don’t forget to make time in your summer schedule to take a break for yourself so you can recharge your batteries. If you need a break, ask for help from a neighbor or family member to watch the kids while you go for a walk or enjoy a quiet cup of coffee. If you take the time to prioritize your mental health, you’ll be better able to engage with your kids and connect as a family.
We hope this article helps you set your family up for success this summer by creating a simple schedule, with fun and educational activities you can do as a family or with friends. Remember to make time for breaks for yourself to allow you to recharge your batteries. Remember, ‘Every day may not be all good, but there’s good in every day.’ Happy Summer! 🌞