SUMMER VACATIONS!! These words sound like MAGIC to children. They get a long break from Academics after a very hardworking year. Vacations are magic words that bring joy to all children. Summer vacation and the excitement starts with the last bell of the last day of school before closing for the much awaited vacation. The actual purpose of vacation in summer is to tide over the unbearable heat. Children want to forget anything to do with school for that period. Vacations are the best time to relax and enjoy and do activities which they had been wanting to do for a long time during the year. But this is a harrowing time for Parents . They have to think of umpteen activities to keep their kids very busy.
Join Summer Camps
Summer Camps are the in thing today. There are many places where there are summer camps organized for children in certain age groups. There are many activities like Art & Craft, Fireless cooking, Gymnastics, Dramatics , Dancing etc. There are also camps organized for games like Cricket, Football & Hockey. There are also outdoor adventure camps held by organisations like the YMCA, YWCA, and many other private companies. Children get to learn to be independent and responsible.
Excursions are fun outings for children. Especially if they are going out to that particular place for the first time. Parents can gather a group of other parents whose children are of the same age group as theirs. They can plan short excursions to the Museum or the Planetorium or the Cold drink Factory or even the Biscuit factory. The excitement of the children is worth seeing. They not only gain knowledge but also have a lot of fun seeing how biscuits or cold drinks are made. In Planetariums they can see and learn about the galaxy of stars, Planets and the Constellation. A visit to a Museum exposes you to in-depth information on any particular subject . Children learn about ancient civilizations and a lot more and they can take home an experience they will never forget.
Go to the Zoo
A Zoo is a place where there are different animals and birds. It is a great attraction for children. It is a world in itself. The children feel really fascinated seeing live animals which probably they had seen only on Animal Planet or even National Geographic before. The Zoo also offers joyrides on Elephants which the children will enjoy. It is a great delight to see colourful birds. There are some birds which are very rare. Parents can make this trip a fun as well as an educational trip. Outside every cage there is a small writeup on the birds or animals in that cage. This can be read out to the children. They can make a note of it. After going home Parents can ask the children to write a small essay on their visit if they are at an age where they can write.
Wake up the children early morning and take them cycling. This is also a good experience for them. Normally the roads are full of cars which do not let them even walk on their own on roads. Or Parents can take them to the beach if there is one close by and play games like hand ball or other running games. They get a lot of space to do this. There are also other outdoor games like Badminton, Seven Stones, Throw Ball, etc.
Taking the kids outeveryday is really not feasible for Parents. Teach them some old game which probably you have not played since you were a kid yourself. You will be equally excited and will enjoy playing with the children. There are indoor games like Carom, Snakes and Ladders, Ludo, Monopoly, Chess, Scrabble etc which teaches them to sit in one place for a long time.
Plan a Treasure Hunt
On a weekend again Parents can get together with kids and Plan a Treasure Hunt. It could be planned as a family treasure Hunt where the children will be very thrilled to join their parents in the treasure hunt. Or a treasure hunt can be organized only for the children and the parents can have their share of fun.The Thrill of finding things right under a kids nose take on a new luster when found. The excitement of reading the clues and then decoding them and finding the next clue will keep them busy the whole day. Then there will be delicious snacks or lunch to satiate their hunger & thirst pangs. Children who cannot read can be given clues by using pictures to illustrate what they are supposed to find. This not only keeps them busy but also teaches kids the resourcefulness they need to play independently.
Make Reading Fun
Reading is actually fun. But Most children do not want to as it reminds them of school. The main aim of the parent should be to develop an interest in the child to read. It is not important for the child to get every word right. But it is important for the child to love reading itself. Once they finish the book and ask for another you are sure that you have succeeded in your effort. Once the child finishes reading a book the Parent can ask him or her to narrate the story in his own words. This is fun because otherwise they are on the other side of the fence with the Parent telling them a story. This will develop their language skills unknowingly. Reading clearly introduces them to new vocabulary.
There are books available in a wide range of Jokes, Visual puzzles and also brain teasers. For our young ones Books with hidden pictures can be given or even find the difference between two same pictures. They are brain teasers for kids who cannot read.
Picnics is an event that can be organized for children in their backyard. This is one event which is lots of fun for kids as they are given a lot of fun food and sweets and they can also play many games. They provide that WOW factor for kids. Give the children ingredients for sandwiches so that they can make them themselves. So the thrill of making it is also enjoyed by them.
Take the children for movies which they have been longing to catch up with. There are many movies which are fun as well as educational. Else if you cannot take them out you can bring movies home .make some Popcorn for them and let them enjoy.
Thinking of activities for your kids is one big task. But surely not too difficult.Plan activities before hand so that you do not have last minute jitters of kids being home for such a long time. Enjoy their holidays.
Happy Holidays !