Six Meaningful Summer Activities for Children

Six Meaningful Summer Activities for Children

The summer break is here and things can get quite boring once the initial excitement wears off. While our Summer@Todden program offers some great options to channelise children’s bubbling energy, here are some at-home activities to keep children all the more engaged: 

Scrapbooking 

Creating a scrapbook is a wonderful creative outlet that builds several different skills. Cutting, pasting and colouring builds fine-motor skills while also allowing children to think creatively, organise materials and express themselve

Parents or older siblings can help young learners decide on a theme for their scrapbook project such as “my family”, my summer vacation’, ‘my favourite things’, etc. Allow children to give free rein to their imagination through cutting, pasting, painting, colouring pages, and more. Children can use actual photographs, drawings, and images cut from magazines to create their book.

However, let this be a fun project and not a tedious task. Do not focus on or expect a beautiful end result but instead value the creative process of children. Also, remember that children, especially the young ones, do not have the patience to sit at one place and work on the scrapbook for long and continuous hours. Don’t force your child to work on the scrapbook. Set aside at least 15 – 20 minutes everyday for scrapbook activity until it holds your child’s interest. Remember that if they lose interest, let it go and allow them to pursue some other activity. 

Research family tree

The summer vacation is a great time to take children to visit their grandparents or extended family. And while there, children can learn more about the family tree by talking to different members and compiling their findings into a piece of art. Not only will this build the familial bonds but allow children to better understand the different relationships in their life. This project can also incorporate math and literacy skills by counting, grouping and sorting the family members and learning new vocabulary such as ‘great grandparent’, ‘first cousin’, and ‘second cousin’. 

Make a movie 

It’s never too early to get familiar with technology and creating a movie can be one of the most enjoyable and rewarding ways to do so. Give your child a simple point and shoot camera and teach them how to shoot video with it. If you don’t own a simple camera, allow them to use your smartphone for limited periods of time each day. Inspire them to come up with a story of their own and create a storyboard which they can then use to shoot a simple movie. This project can teach children about storytelling and visual presentation as well as camera angles and photography. You can also go a step further and help your child use a free mobile app to do some simple edits to their movie. 

Write a story book 

If you prefer to keep the children away from gadgets, creating a storybook instead of a movie is a great option. Encourage your child to write and illustrate a tale of their choice, and guide them in putting it together in the form of a booklet. You can use card stock for the cover and regular A4 paper folded in half for the actual pages. Remember to focus on the process and not the end product. If your child enjoys this activity, make it even more fun by challenging them to create a longer chapter book. They can even involve their friends or siblings in the project! 

Start a business

Here’s an idea for all the young learners with an enterprising mindset – help them dabble in a small business. Most suitable for older kindergarteners or first graders, this project can be an immersive and integrative learning experience. Guide your little entrepreneurs in creating a product they love such as artwork, simple crafts, home-baked cookies, etc. Help them keep track of the expenses that go into creating the product and then set a suitable price for it. Teach them how they can ‘market’ or ‘promote’ their creations to family members and friends; and keep track of the revenues that come in from sales. Then teach them how they can calculate profits and work out if they made any. Remember to focus on having fun at every stage of the process!

Start a vegetable garden or care for a plant 

For the nature-loving little ones, what better engagement than growing some vegetables or herbs. There are many plants which are really easy to grow (even in the summer months!) and require minimal care, so do some research on what would suit your circumstances best (indoor or outdoor, flowering plant or not). Give your child the responsibility to water the plant as required and ask them about their observations of the growth process. If you’re growing a vegetable or herb, show children how to pick it and use it in the kitchen. This can be a wonderful hands-on way of learning some science! 

The most important thing is to give children the freedom to explore and develop their interests without too much pressure to produce any results. That’s the best way to unleash creativity and have meaningful experiences that are essential to all-round growth and development. Here’s wishing you a fun and enjoyable summer!