Can you recall making huge plans for summer as a child, but the only things you ended up doing is watching TV and wandering around the neighborhood? Now, as a parent, you certainly need to help your kids make the most out of their summer break by engaging them in various activities, encouraging them to get out of the house, explore, enjoy different experiences and spend some time on personal development.
1. Consider sending your child to a summer camp
Summer camps are often underrated by parents and their children. However, with the number of summer camp options available right now, it’s totally possible to find an institution that suits your child’s interests and personality. A good summer camp improves confidence, makes kids more independent, encourages communication, allows meeting other people and engaging in different activities you child wouldn’t do otherwise. Teens learn a lot when attending a summer camp. However, they may get into a major trouble there. That’s why you need to pay special attention to the process of choosing a reputable camp for your child and make sure that the staff is great at keeping teens safe and busy.
2. Volunteering and getting an internship
While it’s rather important for teens to enjoy the summer freedom and get some rest before the start of a new school year, it’s also essential to use the spare time wisely and gain various experience. Encourage your teenagers to do some community work every now and then, as it is highly beneficial for their personal development, as well as for their future college admission and employment opportunities. An internship is something pre-graduates should definitely go for during the summer before their last school year, as they’ll get exposed to a potential career, earn a bit of money and improve college admission chances.
3. Summer jobs
Teenagers need to learn financial independence and earn their own money to cover some expenses. Pet sitting and walking, babysitting, working at a fast food chain or helping with the family business is a perfect chance for you teen to earn some money for his summer adventures, as well as improve working ethics and learn responsibility.
As a parent, you need to help your teenager choose a decent summer job, as some dishonest employers often hire teens to pay them less than they deserve or not to pay at all. Check the working conditions and ask for employer’s contact information just in case.
4. Getting outside
If you notice that your teen doesn’t get out too often and risks spending the entire summer break in front of TV or computer screen, you need to step in and take actions to encourage him to spend more time out and about. Ask if he/she would like to throw a pool party, arrange an open-air movie screening, have a picnic with friends or family, etc. Go for family hikes, bike rides, road trips, etc. Explore and experience together as much as possible.
5. Redecorating teen’s room
Summer is a perfect chance to get crafty and spend some time with your teen redecorating his room and changing things up. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on a remodel. Set up an outdoor relaxation zone for reading books or doing other ‘lazy’ activities while breathing fresh air and exposing your skin to vitamin D.
6. Going camping
What better way to spend some time away from your home without spending too much money than camping out in the wilderness? If you teen is old enough to go with his friends without the adult supervision, don’t be too suspicious about it and give your child the means to experience summer break with friends to the fullest extent. Go camping as a family to spend some quality time with your teen and relax in the nature.
7. Attending local events
There’re a lot of interesting things you teenager may do without leaving the hometown. Even small towns carry out a lot of events you teen may attend, as well as help arranging. Encourage your teenager to take part in educational programs, celebratory events, exhibitions, fairs, etc. Get him a bike if he doesn’t have one yet, so that he’s able to explore the town and discover its best sites.
8. Doing chores
If you pay your teenager to do chores at home, ask if he would like to take up extra tasks (like babysitting younger siblings, taking a family vehicle he’s allowed to drive to an auto repair shop for a scheduled maintenance, mowing the lawn, cleaning a pool, taking care of a vegetable garden, etc.) to earn extra pocket money and spend them on something they’ve been wanting to do during summer. Agree on a certain financial goal and help your teenager achieve it by providing him with different chores and part-time job opportunities. The one thing you have to avoid is overloading your teenager with work, as you need to give him some time to enjoy the last careless summers he has before leaving for college and having to spend his summers just as other grown-up people.