We all know that most boys have more energy than most girls. But when the kids are in school, this fact is manageable…then the doors swing open and freedom rings! Summer has arrived and your boys are lose, excited and full of energy. What is a parent to do to preserve even the smallest bit of sanity?
First, there’s something good to be said for continuing the organization and structure you set forth during the school year, regardless of your son’s age. If you haven’t been structured or organized, then buck up and get started; remember your sanity’s at stake here.
Here’s a list for you to get started:
- Decide on an appropriate bedtime
- Identify times for reading (all kids should read over the summer to keep up on skills)
- Agree on chores or responsibilities and associated compensation (doesn’t have to be money – he can work toward going somewhere or doing something special)
- Have your children create a list of things they want to do over the summer. They should submit the list to you prior to the last day of school. On the last day do a celebration event and pick one item on a child’s list. Check things off as you do them. Keep them visible so everyone is reminded of the list and works at checking everything off before the start of school. Use the list as a negotiation tool when necessary.
- If money’s tight and you are unable to get away – explore your community. Get to know nearby areas that are within an hour. You might learn something new and you can plan together and get to know one another. They might initially complain – but in the end they’ll be glad you made the effort.
- Take up a new hobby together. Tennis, golf, biking. Do something outside and set an exercise example so not only will your kids burn off some extra energy, but they’ll be excited to see mom and/or dad do something adventurous too.
- Regardless of the weather, make sure to get those boys outside everyday for a decent chunk of time. Too much computer time is not only not so good for kids, but doesn’t give them a place to burn off that crazy energy.
- If both parents work, many of the above suggestions can certainly apply and in fact will make the time you spend together even more special.
- Make sure your kids know and understand (and agree with) your rules and expectations – things will go smoother if everyone is on the same page.
Structured chaos is my plan. I try to maintain a schedule, but expect the unexpected. It’s summer, time to try and relax a bit and have some fun.
by Expert Mommy, Renee Martinez