I haven’t written in a while for various reasons, but today summer popped into my mind and I had to write. It’s all about long and lazy days. It’s a time when both kids and parents de-structure and de-stress. Routines become a thing of the past, bedtimes roll by with no one giving it a second thought. Kids revel in lying about the house, sleeping in, exploring their interests, staring at the ceiling, reading, playing, spending time with grandparents and cousins, and in general floating around.
Babies and toddlers need routines. In facts kids do need routine, but not the ones where every minute is scheduled. Free unstructured time helps kids fill it with activities they like. They learn to entertain themselves, which leads to independence. Kids who grow up this way rarely complain of boredom and don’t need to be entertained. They are self-sufficient and even grow up to be people who are comfortable with their own selves. Most importantly, they explore a variety of interests. This helps them decide what they wish to do as they grow up.
5 Summer Activities
Summers are a good time for kids to put away their devices and homework. Kids need to switch off from online games and explore non digital activities. After all human beings are a part of nature and it’s important to stay plugged into a system that we are part of. Being in touch with nature regulates well-being, keeps the senses sharp and gives kids a sense of cyclical continuity.
Many of the modern day lifestyle problems that kids have developed can easily be sorted out with a massive dose of Vit-N. Here are 5 summer activities for kids to explore:
- Get the kids to explore the geography around where they live. Take the kids out to parks and open spaces close to home. Let them feel the soil and grass under their feet. Open up a map and talk about the contiguity of land. Spot rivers and other water bodies close by. Wade through the water and throw pebbles in. Talk of the source of drinking water.
- Spot our fellow creature in the world. If you live in an urban jungle watch out for birds which have found new nesting places. Help kids understand the importance of our little insect friends and wean them away from pet games. Teach them to observe plants and insects. Spot the caterpillars, butterflies, wasps, bee hives or the many other signs of nature in our concrete hubs. In case you need to learn more to get your kids interested, many universities put out a lot of information about our fellow creatures on their departmental sites. There are a lot of dedicated scientists/commoners who love sharing their information on virtual and real world spaces.
- Get kids to photograph the same things through various parts of the day. When they see the same scene/thing photographed under various conditions of light, they understand the impact of the Sun, and how we fit into the astronomical world.
- Try Hapa Zome, a craft activity. Get the kids to collect leaves and flowers in various colors and shapes. Lay them out on a piece of clean white cotton cloth with no starch. Spread a piece of tissue on the plant matter and hammer gently on it. This will help release the pigments onto the cloth. Peel the plant matter off to see the prettiest of designs. Kids can hang their piece of art on the wall or on the refrigerator at home.
- Run a scavenger hunt in a park. This can be an intensely fun activity in a small neighborhood park. Make lists of things to be found. Distribute it among the groups. Help the kids find them. This will help them explore the park in ways you had never imagined. Give clues which will make them look for things from different perspectives. E.g. Spotting an owl home or a type of ant nest in the ground.
Phew, writing this makes me impatient for summer. Well time and tide wait for none, and before we know it summer will be here.