13 summer fun tips to engage your student’s body and mind

Try these tips for keeping kids on the go in the summer — so they can be their best learners year-round.

No matter where you live, there are plenty of summer activities that are fun and engaging — and many of them are even free.

Try these tips for keeping kids on the go in the summer — so they can be their best learners year-round.

1. Get involved

Kids of all ages love to know that they’re making a difference, and community service opportunities abound. Read to nursing home residents. Stock food pantries. Clean up a local park. Getting involved helps our community build a Climate of Caring.

2. A day in the park

Pennsylvania has 121 state parks and conservation areas. There’s camping, swimming, hiking, boating, breathtaking views — even theaters and historical landmarks. Many parks offer handicapped-accessible facilities.

3. Take a hike

Look around and you will be surprised at the wealth of hiking trails in your area. There are trails in ski resorts, municipal parks, converted railway beds and maybe even in your own community. Those same ski resorts, by the way, refashion themselves for lots of summertime fun in the woods and hills.

4. Get creative

Engaging the mind with reading and other creative ventures is just as vital as engaging the body. Summer is the time to read books, make videos, write stories, stage shows, make music and create works of art without the pressure of assignments, deadlines and grades.

5. Backyard adventures

You don’t need to get in the car to discover new wonders. Send kids on a backyard bug hunt, or challenge them to create art with sticks, pinecones and leaves. Hold a backyard camping trip, complete with stargazing. Plant vegetables, and make healthy meals celebrating the bounty of your garden.

6. Summer fun, close to home

Look no further than your local parks and recreation department for fun and enrichment. There may be affordable day camps packed with games and crafts. Some offer clinics for honing athletic skills on the field and court.

7. Build skills

Classes at craft stores offer a chance to learn to sew, knit or do art projects. Gymnastics and dance studios offer concentrated sessions to explore movement and discover a new passion.

8. Fairs and carnivals

County and agricultural fairs turn the spotlight on all the goodness of Pennsylvania farms. It’s where kids learn to enjoy fresh new tastes and see how food reaches the store shelves. And that local fire company carnival isn’t just a chance to win a giant teddy bear at the Whac-A-Mole booth. It’s your opportunity to teach kids about supporting the institutions that keep them safe.

9. Kitchen curiosity

Bake a cake. Make a casserole. Build a banana split. Create a new drink recipe. Kitchen adventures teach kids the basics of cooking while giving them the pride of sharing their culinary successes with family and friends.

10. Start a business

Host a lemonade stand or mow lawns. Baby-sit. Sew and sell shopping bags. Kids who earn money learn to appreciate the value of a dollar and to manage their money.

11. Museums and historical sites

A day at the museum will introduce your child to whole new worlds of natural history and art. Look for programs designed for children’s fun and education. Historical sites can offer interactive experiences that immerse visitors in the wonders of life before modern conveniences.

12. Watch a movie

America has a love affair with movies in the summertime. Grab a blanket or chairs and head to a free twilight showing at a park or library near you.

13. Track it

Wearing pedometers and activity trackers for kids gets children enthused about fitness. Turn the day’s goal into a game or challenge with a reward, such as finding out how many steps it takes to walk to your favorite ice cream parlor.

Author

Commonwealth Charter Academy

Published

August 9, 2017

Category

Learning Lab

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