With the end of the school year approaching, you may be anxiously trying to plan activities that are fun and educational to fill the coming summer months. If you are spending the summer at home, the activities may seem limited. After all, you are so familiar with your town or city that there possibly couldn't be anywhere new to enjoy and explore, right? You may be surprised at what you may find. Here are some tips to making your vacation for kids by kids a success!
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Planning activities for your family can be a daunting task. Trying to please everyone, while ideal, is almost impossible. Take some of the stress off your shoulders and delegate some of the decision making to the kids. Sound a little scary? It can be, especially if you are trying to get agreement from all involved and said activities seem a little sketchy to your adult mind (zip-lining, anyone? ), but allowing the children to have a say keeps them engaged, interested, and willing.
Make a Vacation for Kids a Learning Experience!
Assign your children a set of guidelines for planning their vacation activities. Giving them a budget to follow is a great way to keep their math skills sharp while teaching them the value of a dollar. It will allow for some creativity. A bonus is that researching things to do can be quite educational for both you and them. Part of the fun of planning your staycation activities is discovering new things about familiar places. Maybe the local museum will have a temporary summer exhibit on a subject your kids focused on in science class this past year - how wonderful would it be to expand on something they've already learned about and find interesting? Many local libraries also have wonderful summer programs that are usually free and can be fun, as well as engaging.
Ditch the Electronics and Steer Them to the Great Outdoors!
No matter where you live, summer is a time for great weather and sunshine. Encourage your kids to lose the tablets and choose activities that involve being physically active, as keeping physically fit and active can boost educational performance. Walking or hiking trails at state parks are a great way to keep active while learning about the environment and many of these parks have education centers with a variety of programs. Even a day at the beach can be a learning experience while keeping the kids moving.
Don't be discouraged if every outing isn't a success. There is always a learning experience to be had. Your children will probably walk away from their summer staycation with newly-learned negotiating and listening skills and (hopefully) the ability to compromise, as well as all the classroom-worthy insights garnered from their various trips around their community.
Rest assured, whatever activities your family chooses, the memories made will last a lifetime and the education your children gain along the way will be invaluable.