Summer Survival Tips for Parents

8 Easy Solutions to Help Parents this Summer

You’ve been waiting for months for the school year to end. Now that summer is here, you can’t wait for the kids to go back! Arm yourself with this list of Summer Survival Tips for Parents.

Summer break is such a magical time for kids. For parents, it can be full of stress.

As much as you love your kids, many parents have to make big changes to accommodate them being at home full-time. Whether it’s arranging childcare, or summer camp or adjustments to your own work schedule, it can be a challenge.

You can almost feel the atmospheric shift between the school year and summer break.

Kids are full of energy and excitement. Parents? Well, your excitement is mixed with the exhaustion of repetition and referring battles over spoons and popped bubbles.

The economy may affect how much you’re able to do this year. That’s true for our family.

I dream of being able to travel over the summer. I would love to give my kiddo new environments and experiences throughout her life that involve different cultures and languages.

In reality, we will summer where we fall, winter and spring… at home. So with that, I have to find ways to stay sane and have fun.

How to Manage Having Kids Home

This is a special time for parents for school age children. This time of freedom gets shorter and shorter with each passing year. Whether you’re working inside or outside of the home, or a stay-at-home mom, make it a point to enjoy being with your kids.

1. Maintain a Schedule – I recommend that you don’t completely eliminate having a structure or routine. For starters, it will help with the transition back to school in a couple months. Growing kids need sleep. Not only is it good for their minds and bodies, but getting enough rest helps regulate their behavior. The last thing any parent wants is a moody or grumpy kid.

The longer days make it harder to convince kids it’s bedtime. Allow a little freedom here, but maintain some sort of routine. In addition to sleep, they also need structure and boundaries. So, outside of slumber, plan out their activities. Allow idle time throughout the week as well. A routine will help parents and kids alike.

2. Organize Weekly Outings – Kids are generally more cooperative when they have something to look forward to. As a parent, not only is the outing a bargaining chip, it’s also a time to enjoy and experience life with your children. Outings don’t have to be elaborate, keep it simple. (ex. Playground, Spray Park, Petting Zoo, Library)

3. Quiet Time – The noise level rises during the summer break. Follow this 2-part system… First, have the kids expend their energy outdoors (running, jumping, climbing). Second, include daily quiet time for reading, puzzle, arts and crafts. Quite time gives allows everyone time to wind down, the calm before the storm.

4. Independent Play Time – Encourage independence. During the school year, time apart is baked-in to each day. School might be followed by sports or other activities. Arrange activities that can be done at home, without your involvement. Or, plan something more formal if necessary. (Ex. Day Camp, Summer Camp, Sports Clinics, Art Classes) There are many ways to provide free time while still enhancing the summer experience for your kids.

Related Article: Kids Summer Activities

How Kids Survive the Summer at Home

Kids like variety. When left with the same activities and environment, they grow bored quickly. Introduce variety into your kids world this summer. It’s not about a new activity every day, just sprinkle in something throughout the summer.

5. Kid Swap – Tap into your network of ‘mommy friends’. You are not the only parent looking for a break. Not all families have the ability to make special plans for their kids. But, you can do for each other. Trade babysitting. Put it on the schedule if you can. Every Wednesday.

6. Play Dates – Some of your kids best mates may only be around during the school year. Try to arrange some time for them to get together over the summer. Help keep those friendships alive!

7. Home Activities – Do you have entertainment planned at home? Don’t feel like you have to go to a lot of trouble here. Plan indoor and outdoor activities. Sometimes it’s too hot for kids to safely play outside. On those days, movies, puzzles and art projects are a good choice.

8. Outdoor Fun – Encourage your child to enjoy spending time outside. Water activities and toys are the obvious choice. They’re both fun and refreshing. Make sure you are stocked up on the essentials to make outside play easy. Get a bike pump for bikes and balls, bubble mix, paint, floaties, bucket and pail.

The point of summer is to just chill. Avoid any urge to fill all of your kids time with activities. A little boredom won’t hurt anyone. It will encourage your kids to be a little more creative to look for ways to entertain themselves.

Related Article: Why Staycations are Better for Families

Summarizing Summer Survival Tips for Parents

The fun, lazy days of summer. Do you remember what it was like? Things aren’t quite as rosy from the parenting side.

Parents don’t have the freedom to just do whatever, you have to get stuff done. But, working is hard to do when your school age kids are underfoot.

If you work at home, take breaks throughout your workday to enjoy meals with the kids and get in a little play time. Exercise or physical activity will reduce stress levels and create bonding experiences for all of you.

Try something new as a family.

When excessive heat keeps everyone indoors, you really start to feel the pressure. A little time apart gives space for cooler heads.

You need time together and time apart. Get together with other families so everyone of all ages can socialize and engage.

The goal to a happy, stress-free summer is a little planning, some quiet time and a lot of time outdoors.

With a little advanced planning as well as leaving some room for the unexpected, everyone can have a great summer.

How do you manage summer stress when the kids are home? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

2 thoughts on “Summer Survival Tips for Parents”

    1. Ha! I love this and know what you mean, Becky! I will say that you do gain a bit more tolerance for your own kids than you do for kids that are not yours… even ones you love. But, believe me when I say it’s only a little easier. In general, it can be overwhelming, for sure. I still can’t get over how much noise can come out of someone so small! Isn’t it amazing?! And, the energy! My goodness, they just have an endless supply. I envy them for that. It makes me tired just thinking about it.

      ~ Cassie

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