Summer is almost here. Are you ready? Don’t worry, there’s still time to get things in order. Summer is a great time to catch up with your kids, teach them new things, and maybe travel somewhere new. With that said, most of those activities take some planning
Luckily, this article can help. Here, you’ll find a few tips for making the most out of this summer with your kids. From setting summer goals to monitoring their tech activity, here’s everything you should know:
1. Set Summer Goals
Are there certain things you’d like to accomplish this summer with your kids? Is there something specific you want your children to achieve before going back to school in the fall? Take some time to figure out your family goals for the summer.
Keep in mind that these goals can be anything you want. For example, maybe you want your children to read at least three chapter books this summer. Or perhaps you would like to spend quality time teaching your kids how to cook. Summer is a great time to tackle your goals. Don’t forget to ask your kids if they have summer goals, too.
After figuring out what you want to accomplish, it’s time to start making plans. Planning your summer activities ahead of time can help you save money. So if you’re taking a trip, look for flights and hotels now to grab the best deals. Whatever you end up planning, make a family calendar to keep everyone in the loop. Consider using a whiteboard calendar so your children and partner can add events and appointments as well.
2. Keep Them Active
Summer is the time for children to relax. After all, they spent months in school learning new information and taking tests. They deserve a break. Nevertheless, you don’t want your children to turn into couch potatoes this summer. To keep that from happening, plan activities to ensure your kids remain active.
Besides planning play dates with friends, consider enrolling your kids in summer camps or sports. You could even purchase a kids smartwatch and encourage them to reach a certain number of steps each day. Regular physical activity is important to keeping kids healthy. So while they might want to spend all their time playing video games, don’t let them. Encourage them to go outside and get moving instead.
3. Revisit Your Work Schedule
Summer can be a difficult time for working parents. Sure, your children have a break, but that doesn’t mean you do. Luckily, there are several options for child care. Unfortunately, many of them are expensive. Don’t worry though, there are other alternatives.
For example, you might consider modifying your work schedule. If possible, request to start work earlier so you’re off earlier. Depending on your company, you could ask to work remotely full-time or a few days a week. If a flexible schedule isn’t feasible for you, maybe your partner can adjust their workdays.
If neither one of you can accommodate changes in your schedules, you’ll need to explore childcare options. Start looking now. Most summer camps fill up rather quickly, so you want to get a head start. You could also hire a babysitter or ask family and friends for their help.
4. Monitor Tech Activity
As mentioned above, it’s important to ensure your children stay active this summer. One way to make that happen is by monitoring their tech activity. If you haven’t already, set rules for your children’s tech usage this summer. Even if you already have rules in place, consider reworking them for the season.
This might mean setting a time limit for technology in general or just for the use of certain apps. You could also decide not to allow phones at the dinner table, in bedrooms, and during family time. Clearly communicate the rules to your kids and be sure to follow them yourself, too. By setting a good example, you’ll make it easier for them to stick to the rules.
This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t let your children use technology this summer. Tech can be a great way to help them stay connected to their school friends and family. Just set clear and effective boundaries so they aren’t spending too much time online.
5. Don’t Forget to Budget
A summer budget is just as important as any other budget. Creating one ensures you and your family have fun without breaking the bank. To create a summer budget, you should first determine your income, taking into account any time off or overtime. Chances are, if you have a full-time job, you know what you’ll make this summer. On the other hand, if you’re an entrepreneur or a freelancer, your income might be more variable.
Based on your income, determine how much you can spend this summer. Take it a step further and break your future expenses into categories (vacations, groceries, etc.). This way, you’ll know exactly what you can allocate to each category. The clearer your budget, the less likely you are to overspend.
Summer comes and goes quicker than you probably imagine. It’s important to be prepared, so you and your kids can make the most out of these few months. The tips above will help you start planning and maybe even come up with a few ideas of your own.