My kids (most kids, I think) thrive on structure, and sometimes summer can get a little too loosey-goosey. Without the steadiness of that Monday-to-Friday school schedule (I miss it already) kids can get cranky because they (A) don’t know what’s coming up next and (B) get into a rut of doing the same things without any variety.
Yes, they will spend a lot of time playing outside, and we will make many trips to the local park, library, pool, playground, etc. They will draw and make crafts and play with their toys and build blanket forts and invent new games.
Sometimes, I just structure activities that will keep them quietly content while I’m working. So here are some of the ways I’m going to structure our time this summer to keep them from becoming “vidiots.”
I started doing this a few months ago actually. They run up to our son’s room and each build a unique Lego creation, and then I come upstairs and tell them what I like about each one — um, what I like about the Lego creations, not the kids themselves.
(Yes, everything has some sort of alliteration. It’s the “fluency heuristic,” which means ideas are more valuable if they’re easier to say or think). This is when I’ll pull out toys they haven’t played with in a long time, and they are legally obligated to play with them for a certain amount of time. I’m looking at you, giant expensive Playmobil collection they never touch anymore.