The summer is an exciting time when you’re a kid and brings new adventures of fun and exploring with each day. But as a therapist, I often hear from parents that summer is stressful. It can bring high expectations, extra expenses, and an abundance of time to fill. Maybe this summer can be a balance of fun adventures and activities that don’t take a lot of extra time or money. Spending some intentional time each day with your kids this summer will not only create fun summer memories, but build stronger connections as a family, and allow you to let go of those stressful summer feelings.
Connect with Your Kid 7 Days a Week
Memory Monday – A great way to commemorate all of the fun you’re having over the summer is to take pictures, draw, paint, and enjoy making a memory book or other craft. Sometimes it might be as simple as drawing or coloring together. Sitting down and being intentional about making something creates a memory in itself.
Try it Tuesday – Try something new with your kids. If you’re feeling adventurous Try it Tuesdays can include day trips to local museums, parks, and pools that you’ve never visited before. Smaller ideas might include trying a new food or playing a new game at home. Allow each child to have a turn picking something new and see what they come up with!
Wacky Wednesday – Have you read Dr.Seuss’ “Wacky Wednesday” yet? Children will love to listen to the story and you can continue the book’s theme throughout the day. Put your clothes on inside-out, have crazy hair, walk backwards, and other “wacky” ideas. As summer continues you can hit the library to read other books, allowing you to choose other themes for your day.
Thoughtful Thursday – Being intentional in making something for someone else or brightening someone else’s day might become one of your child’s favorite activities. Bake cookies for a neighbor, offer to do your neighbor’s yard work, or simply call up Grandma to say a surprise “hi”. When you engage in these activities, you’re not only connecting with your children but modeling and teaching kindness and generosity.
Fitness Friday – Try something active. Kick a soccer ball, go down the slide with your kids, or set up some indoor bowling to get out of the heat. If your child enjoys a sport, they might like to teach you or show you what they are learning. If they are too young to pick or do not generally enjoy sports, choose something to try together. You are teaching them healthy habits and modeling and encouraging them to take care of their bodies.
Science Saturday – Support and encourage your child’s love of learning throughout the summer by having a weekly science experiment. Check out Babble for a great list of at home science experiments to try. Both children and adults will be amazed at many of these experiments and science can be a great way to connect as you join your children in their curiosity and excitement.
Splash Sunday – Lastly, summer just wouldn’t be summer without a water day thrown in to the mix! Surprise your kids with water balloons and have a water fight or just enjoy running through the sprinklers in the backyard. A trip to the local swimming pool is a great outing, but splash Sunday can be just as fun at home with some intentional planning and connecting.