The summer holidays are here, meaning for the next six weeks there’s a lot of spare time to fill. All too often kids spend their break bored and use their free time to sit on electronics, rather than exploring new hobbies and building new skills. The school bell may stop ringing, but it’s important to remember summer is a great time for all kinds of learning opportunities. Here’s some summer activity ideas that encourage learning and are fun too.
Plan projects that can last all summer
A great place to start is to help your kids plan out some projects that can last all summer. Not only will they keep them busy but will also give them a sense of accomplishment when it comes to the end of the summer. Sit down and brainstorm some ideas together. Here’s a few fun projects to get started:
- Start a garden:Starting a vegetable garden from scratch or building a small flower patch can give your kids something to do all summer. They can learn about nature and the science behind it and also reap the rewards of growing and nurturing plants. Being outside in the garden is also known to improve psychological well-being, so it’s a win-win!
- Start a blog/summer journal:Encouraging your teen to start an online blog is a great way for them to practice their writing and computer-based skills. They can write it about anything they’re interested in or just keep a track of their summer break. If they want to create something physical then keeping a scrapbook of their summer memories is a great idea.
- Write a short fictional story:Writing a short fictional story throughout the summer holidays is a fantastic way to build up spelling and grammar skills and can be very enjoyable, especially for students who enjoy being creative. Encourage your child to choose a theme, plan out characters and some mini chapters. You could even print out their final story and ask them to create front cover artwork.
Reading is one of the most beneficial and enjoyable activities for kids to do over the summer holidays. Not only does it combat summer learning loss but engages their imagination. The key is to get kids excited about it. Encourage them to choose books they want to read- just take them to your local library or bookshop to get inspired! It’s also a great idea to take part in the Tutor Doctor Summer Reading Challenge as this can spur kids on to read as much as possible! Find out more here.
Spend time in the kitchen
If your kids love food and cooking, then encourage them to spend some time with you in the kitchen. It’s a great place where children can learn a whole host of different skills - even just giving you a hand with breakfast or dinner is sure to develop their basic cooking skills. You could even ask them to plan out a 3-course meal for a family dinner and with close supervision, get them to plan and measure out, cook and serve food just like a restaurant. It will also provide them with the opportunity to follow and read recipes, measure out ingredients and understand kitchen safety, such as holding knives and using the oven safely.
From board games and educational video games to physical games, there’s so much out there that will help teach your child skills or test their knowledge throughout the summer. Playing card games can help increase number and counting skills, whereas chess can help children work to form strategies. Most board games will also help improve concentration skills and usually require maths or general knowledge - Monopoly and Trivial Pursuit even have kids’ editions so all the family can join in.
Plan a family activity
Letting your child help plan a family activity or day trip during the summer holidays will be a lot of fun but also educational. Suggest going to the zoo or family walk and BBQ at home. Planning from start to finish helps kids practice their executive functioning skills such as budgeting, time management, organisation and communication.