Summer is a great time to take a break from the hectic schedule of school and homework and whatever extracurricular activities kids may be involved in. However, that doesn’t mean that sitting around all summer is what kids want or need.
Instead, summer is a great opportunity for kids to use their free time to try new things, to learn something fun, and even to develop skills that will carry them through into adulthood. Here are a few of the best summer activities for kids.
Summer is the perfect time to explore nature, and to challenge kids along the way. Look for local parks, conservation areas, and trails as an opportunity to help kids connect to and develop a love of nature, and as a way to get them off the couch and moving. Depending on the age and ability of your child, these walks can be casual strolls or more adventurous hikes.
While you’re looking around, see if any of these places offer rock climbing classes or ziplining, or perhaps rafting. There is no reason not to have fun in the outdoors as well. Set up a family calendar online or a family planner so kids can take part in the research as well and add places they would like to explore.
The experience of camping is one that will stay with your child for life. Whether it is one night or a week, spending an entire day outdoors, cooking over a fire or stove, sitting under the stars, and sleeping listening to the sounds of the night, away from digital anything is a wonderful opportunity. Even if you can’t sleep outside, the experience of an early morning until late at night adventure can be just as fulfilling.
Sign up for a lesson related to sport
There are so many sports opportunities available to kids today, but often they get stuck in playing the same thing as their friends, or playing the one thing you signed them up for when they were little. Summer is a great time to expand their horizons, to show them other opportunities, and perhaps, to help them find their passion. Classes, or day camps focused on a specific sport, are a great way to explore new sports, to learn the basics, and to have the ability to try something without committing to a full season.
Pick a variety based on what is available in your area, what might be suitable based on the age and ability of your child, and then get kids involved in deciding what they’d like to try. Once they’ve chosen between tennis, soccer, cheerleading, mountain biking, kayaking, or whatever it is, add the activity to the family planner and suddenly, a long nothing to do summer is filled with opportunity and something predictable.
Think life skills
While you’re enjoying the great outdoors and being active, don’t forget that summer downtime can be a great chance to teach kids a few basic life skills and help them have some fun in the process. Cooking or baking classes, basic car maintenance, gardening, computer camps….all provide opportunities for kids to have fun and to learn some basic skills they may use later in life.
Once kids have those basic skills, they can try out more advanced hobby type classes like cake decorating, woodworking, computer repair…. Again, fun, educational and who knows how that might evolve with time.
This is another opportunity to get kids involved in figuring out activities they would like to try and filling the family online calendar with activities to look forward to.
With a great big country to explore and learn about, playing tourist is a must. Explore your own community, check out attractions within your own state, or adventure further outside your borders but do explore what the nation has to offer.
Get kids involved in researching things they would like to see, visit places they learned about in school, check out websites for travel guides for must-see things to do. People often say they dream of travel but don’t have the time or money. It’s amazing though to discover the number of people who have not even traveled or explored within their own borders. Take advantage of opportunities for adventure, and don’t forget those in your own backyard.
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