The summer vacation period is a time when many families travel for a fun trip together. However, this year everything is rather different, due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, and the related economic fallout that’s hitting so many households.
The likelihood is that you’re keeping your kids at home as much as possible during their summer break. You’ll still need ways to keep them occupied and out of mischief, though, which can be daunting. Here are some ways to help make the days pass more quickly.
Prep Your Yard for Outdoor Fun
An excellent way to minimize your children’s screen time, if it’s something you’re concerned about, is to encourage them to get outside more. Your property’s yard can be the perfect place to while away the hours and get active. For example, kids can jump on a trampoline, have water balloon fights, play hopscotch, or skip rope. They can draw things in chalk on the pavement, or have fun completing scavenger hunts.
The yard is, room permitting, likely also going to be suitable for playing ball sports, climbing trees, playing hide and seek and other games, and noticing interesting things in nature. The backyard is also a great spot to set up a camping experience, and a fire pit to toast marshmallows in and tell stories around.
If you don’t already have a fruit and veggie patch set up, you could take the summer vacation period to do so. Teach your children gardening skills and about where food comes from and how to take care of produce by keeping pests at bay, watering, fertilizing, etc. Also, set up a compost heap and educate young ones about the process of breaking food and other materials down into mulch.
If you have a pool, that will likely be one of the most popular spots on your property during summer. However, if it has been in “hibernation” during the colder months, you’ll likely need to complete numerous tasks before your kids can swim. Look for tips online by searching for “how to get pool ready for summer,” and you’ll find plenty of advice.
In particular, though, always test and purify the water, clean the pool, and check all electrical equipment to ensure it’s working correctly. Also, check the fence around your pool and the latch to the gate allowing access to it to boost child and pet safety.
Teach Them Skills in the Kitchen
The summer vacation period is an ideal time to teach your kids some kitchen skills. Depending on their age, you can have them complete tasks such as choosing recipes, creating shopping lists, picking produce from the garden, measuring ingredients, mixing, taste testing, and more.
Allow children to practice in a hands-on way as much as possible, and turn kitchen time into a bonding experience for you and your family. Then, sit down together to eat the spoils of your efforts, and plan what to make next.
Do Things Together
There are also plenty of other great things you can do at home as a family to keep kids occupied, and all of you connected. For instance, exercise as a group, build a treehouse, foster a pet, or create dedicated game or movie nights.
You can also learn how to and then incorporate more sustainable changes in your household. Plus, you might give back by making things for those in need (human or animal), or compiling a pile of items to donate to goodwill organizations. Don’t forget, too, that there’s no harm in having your children get involved in keeping the household running. Mete out chores for them to do each day, so they learn responsibility.
Utilize Online Learning
It’s good for children to keep learning over the summer, in different ways. This includes picking up information from ebooks, websites, YouTube, webinars, and online courses. In particular, these days, there are all sorts of brilliant resources online that your kids can utilize to pursue their passions and stretch their minds.
For instance, they can get involved in learning a language or instrument or listening to authors read their books and talk about writing. Kids can watch science experiments, learn how to draw, paint, knit, dance, scrapbook, meditate, create jewelry or other crafts, perform magic tricks, and more.
It might seem like the summer is going to drag on forever when you feel the need to stay home. Still, the reality is that with a bit of thinking and planning, you can encourage your youngsters to have a brilliant vacation without even leaving your street.