Finals are over, seniors are graduating, and school is out! (or almost out!) I know that everyone just wants to take a breather right now, so go ahead. Deep breath! *inhale, exhale* It’s time to relax, right?
Yes, take the time to relax. Give your students a week break to do what they want, whether it’s play video games or run around in the backyard. Then, consider, as parents and caregivers, what are the plans for the summer? What is the schedule for your students? Learning is an on-going lifetime endeavor, for students and for you. Make the most of the summer by trying some of these pointers.
1) Have a set schedule. Even when out of school, students should have at least a guideline for the day. While sleeping in is fine, students should continue to have a regular wake-up (and bed) time. This puts the body into a healthy rhythm. Having a routine reduces boredom in students and stress in parents. There should be something to do each day, such as…
2) Take a class or find a community sports team. A class doesn’t have to be academic, and it definitely should be fun. Whether it’s learning a new instrument or learning how to swim, summer activities are a great way to try something new. Students can also take a class to maintain this year’s knowledge, or even to get ahead. Unique classes and programs introduce the student to new people and new experiences. Meanwhile, joining a neighborhood sports team is a good way to stay fit while meeting new people also!
3) Find a job or internship. Sometimes money is a concern, and thus many students get jobs over the summer. Even if money isn’t a concern though, having a summer job or internship is a great thing to list in the student’s portfolio or resume. They build work skills that are handy for future jobs, and they also build confidence in new abilities.
4) Volunteer. Helping others (altruism) is good for them but also good for the person doing the helping. Researchers have found that altruism can improve our well-being. As volunteers, students learn about others, while building work skills just as at any job. Volunteer positions look just as good on resumes and portfolios too.
5) Take time to relax. Life moves “slower” in the summer. This gives everyone a chance to enjoy life and appreciate things that may have been overlooked during the busy school year. Take the time to recuperate from stressing about exams. Find local events for the family to enjoy. Have fun. As the saying goes, stop and smell the roses. Learning how to de-stress and be calm are just as important as knowing how to accomplish responsibilities.
Summer will be gone again before we know it. Enjoy it and keep the mind active!