With summer approaching, parents are eagerly looking for productive and new activities their children will be excited about. Due to COVID-19, everyone has been forced to change their lifestyle and spend weeks (even months) inside their home. As a result, people have continued to endure social isolation from friends, family, and society. Social isolation can be detrimental to our physical, mental, and social health because humans crave interaction and new educational experiences. Our lives will never be the same after the recent pandemic but we must look ahead for ways to stay healthy, safe, and productive into the summer months. This article presents 5 productive activities you should consider for your child to support their physical, mental, and educational well being. These activities are important to consider to help mitigate the effects of social isolation and time spent away from the natural environment.
1. Attend Summer Camp
- Attendance at summer camp helps to support youth development through social, emotional, and experiential based learning.
- Safety and health is always the highest priority and camps have a long history of planning for and managing communicable diseases.
- 96% of children say that summer camp helped them to make new friends. 70% of parents say camp helped to build their child’s confidence and self-esteem. (American Camp Association: The Value of Summer Camp Research).
- Summer Camps provide creative activities which may include: drama, arts and crafts, talent shows, sports, games, field trips, water-based activities, and a technology free environment.
2. Day Trip with Family or Friends
- Many families are choosing to spend their vacation closer to home due to health, safety, and restriction concerns associated with airport travel.
- Day trips are a great way to do something fun and spend quality time with your family. For longer trips you should identify a place within 2 hours of your home to maximize time within an area.
- Longer trips may include exploring neighboring cities or provinces. For example, from Hanoi you can drive to Bat Trang or Duong Lam craft villages, Quang Ninh, Hai Phong, Ninh Binh, or Ba Vi National Park.
- Local day trips include: having a picnic at a park, visiting museums and mausoleums, going for an extended walk around your neighborhood.
- I recommend using the Google Map line drawing feature to create and plan a trip: Drawing Lines and Shapes on Google Maps
3. Go Camping!
- Camping is a fun and unique experience for your child.
- The most important aspect of camping is safety and the importance to plan ahead for weather conditions and proper navigation of your destination.
- You should purchase the 10 Essentials of Camping and know how to use each item in accordance with their function.
- You should learn about the essential tips for first time campers: Beginner Guide To Camping
4. Start a Hobby
- Life should not only be work and no play. Children should have passions beyond just academics, school sports, or extracurricular activities. When your child enters college (and eventually the workforce) having a hobby has been shown to support social wellness and networking capabilities.
- Hobbies begin as fun and playful and are a great way to develop passion and potential career goals The Value of Hobbies.
- Example hobbies: Cooking, juggling, gardening, playing an instrument, learning magic tricks, starting a collection (cards, buttons, cups, etc).
5. Do Impactful Housework
- Housework, chores, and home projects can be meaningful and contribute to positive family life and bonding.
- The summer is a perfect time to complete larger home projects with your child.
- Not only will multi-day projects add value to your home they will also create lasting family memories you can look back for years to come.
- Summer projects include: building an outdoor firepit, making patio chairs, creating a garden, building shelves, making small furniture for your home.
- Examples of larger projects: Summer Weekend Projects
Note: These activities are suggestions for your family. You should always follow the guidelines from your local authorities for health, safety, and travel restrictions.
Point Avenue Summer Camp 2020: After 3 months of staying at home due to COVID-19, this summer is a great opportunity for your child to accelerate their learning process and gain an edge over their peers. To make this a productive summer for your child, Point Avenue is excited to offer an academic summer day camp program. There will be three sessions from June to August. Our camps focus on the most important skills for your child including: English Enrichment, Leadership, Coding, and College Readiness.
Author: Dr. Myles L. Lynch, M.S., Ph.D., Head of Research and Development and Teacher Training