During the school year, we reflect on summers past and the next one to come and we remember treasured times of relaxation. However, sometimes we get so caught up in our scheduling and planning of events, that we forget to just pause, relax and allow our children…and ourselves to play.
If you find upon reflection that you and your family fit into the latter category this summer, I want to encourage you to pause, choose two good books to read and “schedule” some time into you weeks ahead to just “be”…to allow your children to play with some containers and a water hose in the yard, to research finger foods online and allow your children to make dinner for the adults in the house one night…they will have so much fun and you will be amazed at how much they have grown. 🙂
Our team has collected some helpful tips to ensure that summer is indeed a time of relaxing and learning, for you and the child(ren) in your life.
Moms who Think
Easy and Kid-Friendly Recipes from Kraft Foods
Rachel Ray Everyday …a great family website!
Martha Stewart and Summer Activities for Kids~We like the summer housekeeping and garden in a jar 🙂
Great Schools, Involved Parents, Successful Kids is an amazing website!
Given that we like to promote the good in education, we would like to share the Department of Education’s Office of Educational Research and Improvement‘s recommendation for parent/child involvement this summer:
- Give your child a hug and say “I love you.” Do not forget to look them in the eye, to ensure that you make that special connection with them.
- Praise your child. We all like to hear that we are doing a good job…it is o.k. and encouraged to tell your child(ren) often.
- Talk with your child. I encourage you to not only talk with your child, but read the same book they are reading independently, specifically if your child is 7-18. This will always give you something to talk about with them…a common ground.
- Read and write with your child for at least 30 minutes every day. My children keep journals and we write and share about what we are passionate about. (When children are little, pictures in journals versus words are just as good…let your child explain their pictures to you.)
- With your child, make a dictionary of new words and add to it every day. Studies have shown that the more words we learn, the higher our IQ…make it a family activity to choose a word or few words a week and have some fun at the dinner table using these words.
- Count with your child. Math is everywhere, in the grocery store on labels, on the road as we drive…make it a fun exercise to play Eye Spy math or numbers with your child. The more that children can be exposed to numbers in their world and what they are utilized for, the more understanding they will have for math.
- Listen to music with your child. There are many positive studies on why this is important. Studies have shown, that memory retention and learning is enhanced while studying and listening to classical music.
May your summer, or what is left of it, be a time of renewal and rejuvenation for both you and the child in your life. Learning can indeed be fun and relaxing, it just might take a bit of planning. We encourage everyone to live in the moment and choose to be the difference in the life of your child.
Please share your tips and favorite websites with us and we will post it here for all of our readers. Together we can make a difference!
May we continue to seek knowledge in all things~