All kids, even special needs children, need to have activities planned for the summer. The idea is not to get them out of the house, where they feel restless and bored; nor is it to give them something to keep them entertained. Instead, it is to give them new learning opportunities and social connections outside the school environment.
Summer can be a time of tremendous personal growth. It should be a creative, constructive, and instructive time for your kids. And it should be a time for exploration and adventure.
Let’s look at a few ways that you can make this happen:
Sending your kids to summer camp may be one of the best decisions you’ve made, and it’s best to book as early as possible since the best camps fill up quickly. The camp will nurture your kids’ social skills, model healthy and constructive living, and enhance their self-confidence. Additionally, working in teams and connecting with nature will encourage personal growth.
Camps often tend to center around a particular kind of philosophy and set of values. Camp Barnabas provides a Christian camping experience for children with chronic illnesses and special needs. The camp is structured so that children with special needs can be joined with their able-bodied siblings.
Other camps focus on adventure or academic enrichment or athletic improvement. So, if your child has a certain need, interest, or budding talent then send them to a camp that will serve them well.
Spend some time deciding on the best camp for your kids based on their interests and what they hope to get out of the experience. Sending your child to a summer camp that they aren’t interested in attending will not work out well.
Visiting Art Museums
There are many reasons to encourage artistic talent in your children and to inspire their interest in creativity by visiting art museums. Exploring different types of art museums will provide a rich assortment of ideas for your child to ponder over.
Here are some reasons, your kids might be interested in attending various museums around the city during the summer:
- It will improve their imagination.
- They will begin to appreciate how to express ideas through a visual medium.
- They will begin to discover the connections between dark and light, forms and open space, variations and hues and many other beautiful qualities of the world we live in that we often miss.
- They will acquire a broader understanding of geography, history, and culture by viewing art from different parts of the world and from different eras.
- They will learn to make new distinctions about the world, find new meanings, and be stimulated to embark on intellectual interests.
Summer fun can come in many flavors. While hanging out in malls, going to movies, and lounging in coffee shops can be fun, these are all familiar. Trying out new experiences—like indoor skydiving, white water rafting, or camping in the woods—can introduce a whole new level of fun. We all love to experience new things, and stepping out of one’s comfort zone is the fastest way to experience personal growth.
Learning a New Skill
Summers are an excellent time for your child to get good at something that they already find interesting. For instance, if your child likes to play chess, chess camps taught by master level players will quickly deepen their ability for problem-solving and pattern recognition. Or, if your child has an athletic skill, say, basketball, then immersion in basketball activities will empower them to become much better players. Focusing on just one thing and going deep with learning all about it is a powerful way to develop above-average talent with it. Usually, it’s better to join a workshop or camp in something your child already finds interesting. Unless there is keen interest, they won’t be engaged in an in-depth exploration.
It’s fine to think of summer as downtime, as a chance for your kids to relax from the academic and athletic demands of school, but if you don’t structure time for your kids, they will feel bored and restless. Every young person craves excitement and adventure. What’s more, if you don’t structure your kids’ time, they will find their own way of structuring time, often in a way that you won’t approve. A structure can make a huge difference in how much your kids enjoy their summer. With the right structure and adult support and supervision, your kids won’t waste their time or get into any mischief.