Summer is here again, and once upon a time – in your all-too-distant youth – that was cause for excitement! Whether you were a child in grade school or a university student, summer meant freedom from study and responsibility, the opportunity to work a job and have plenty of disposable income at hand, or even just to laze about all summer enjoying your life of irresponsibility and freedom! It was great!
Of course, you’re older now, and the bills keep coming no matter what month it is – so you work through summer (unless you have the fortune to be a teacher!). As such, you’re busy throughout the summer months… but your kids, on the other hand, are not.
During the school year, raising children in your home can present little in the way of inconvenience, as long as timing and occupation is concerned; your children’s time is largely occupied by school and schoolwork, and the school day is even structured to conveniently begin and end around the time your workday begins and ends (if you’re a regular 9-to-5er, anyhow).
During the summer, of course, none of this holds true; your children’s day is completely unstructured, and for several weeks at a time they have no responsibilities or anything to occupy them – and you can’t be around to be a responsible parent! As you can imagine, this provides all kinds of opportunities for shenanigans, mischief, and even dangerous behavior. So what is a parent to do?
In fact, you have several options for providing your children with structure, a way to occupy their time, and a way to ease the pressure on you as a parent this summer. Some are more expensive than others, but in the end, you get the job done: your children are enriched, engaged, and out of the house while you’re at work!
1. Clubs & Camps
The traditional solution to this dilemma is to ship your child off to a location where qualified adults watch over a number of children who find themselves similarly situated. Typically these are themed in some way, so a camp might be able outdoor exploration or science or art; you should try to choose on that you think your child will not only enjoy and be interested in (lest they just spend the time in misery and upset at you for making them do this!) but which will also enrich your child’s life and education.
2. Get Them Involved in Reading!
Reading is something that many lament is going out of style, but we question whether it was truly “in style” to begin with – at least, in the past few decades. It is fashionable among children to mock each other for any number of things, and we sometimes imagine that reading is one of them, but in fact young adult literature has absolutely flourished in recent years. Twilight is only one example of novels that have captured the attention of children across the world; try finding out if your child has a book or series that they like, and get them more of that! They can read at the library, at a reading club, or even at home – it will keep them indoors and out of trouble, after all!
Now, are these your only options? No! But they are by far the simplest, and whether you plan to send your child out or keep them occupied at home, you can be sure your sanity level will be a little more normal once you implement one of these plans!