Saturday, 17 August 2013

Summer Parents ! ! !

- Pallavi Prakash
Cool drinks, refreshing getaways trips to some distant hill station, frequent dips in the pool and those mouth-watering vanillas!! Does that ring a bell?? Synonyms of Summer season. What’s not a million dollar answer but trust me sometimes summers can be million dollar expensive. With the advent of this quarter of the year most of the schools go for their longest vacation and with the tiny kids to Uncle Tom kids being Home Alone, situation can be pretty troublesome. If proper planning is not done to channelize their energies into productive activities they’ll end up asking for resorts, parties , most expensive video games and last but not the least frequent visits to the eateries. Besides soaring up the pre-inflated monthly budget they’ll just learn to kill the time and killing with a heavy price ! This does not mean that kids should be deprived of fun but a fine balance between fun and knowledge is to be achieved. This balance and the variant ratio is to be decided by parents which should be directly proportional to age of the kids and their interests.
It’s time; we take the role of “Summer Parents” and draw a few guidelines for effective ward handling in this summer break. To ensure success in keeping your children busy during summer vacation, remember to first choose the activities that are best age-appropriate and then adapt them to the ability of your child or children. Some activities are free or virtually free and some activities will cost money.
Summer Activities for Children Age 1-4
If your kids are in this age bracket – it must be a hard time getting anything done without a part time sitter or a “mother’s helper”.  I would really recommend you consider hiring some help.
1.      Stock up on workbooks and coloring books, along with crayons, markers, stencils, etc. and plenty of plain paper
2.      Create an activity ‘station’ where the kids can go to make a mess whenever they want and later ask them to clean their stations.
3.      Rotate toys – kids get bored quickly, so once or twice a month, hide the old and bring in the new!
4.      Get a baby backpack –Ask kids to stock in their favourite articles in their backpacks (help them stock in soft toys, old books, some pictures and probably few games)
Summer Activities for Children Age 4-7
Keep the kids “Moving and active”
1.      Take trips to the Library.
2.      Download fun worksheets and sneak in some learning.
3.      Let the kids weed a small garden for you.
4.      Order craft project kits.
5.      Let them create their own scrapbooks
6.      Teach them to create their own PowerPoint presentations
7.      Download a free screen-saver maker and let them create their own slideshows.
8.      Swimming! Swimming is a great summer activity for kids to stay busy during summer break. Children get exercise, have fun, stay cool, and really seem to enjoy swimming.
Summer Activities for Children Age 8-15

  1. Get a metal detector and let the kids explore the yard.

  2. Keep common ingredients in your pantry for Kids friendly cooking projects.

  3. Arrange exciting classes for kids like English Elocution, Speech & Drama etc,.

  4. Summer Volunteer Jobs! Or if your child is old enough-- a summer paid job! A healthy and proactive way to keep your child busy during summer vacation is to help them find the perfect volunteer job.
5.      Sports Programs! Check out your local YMCA, multi-generational center to see what sports programs are going on over the summer. Exercise is great for kids and you may find a sport your child is interested in. Participation on a sports team can vary from lessons to competitive and can last from a week to the whole summer. You can probably find information in your local newspaper, the internet, or your city's website.
6.      Free Summer Workshops
Many retail stores and museums hold free or low-cost workshops, even for kids. Topics may include home improvement projects, history, nature conservation, safety tips, art, crafts, and many more. Workshops are generally interactive, keeping the kids busy making or learning about something. To find out about these workshops call and check the websites of local museums, home improvement stores, zoos, craft stores, and anywhere else you can think of. These aren't always filed under events listings.
Hence, it is imperative to give our children a healthy, informative and lively childhood .These fun based activities will shape their personalities for a golden future!!!