As a working parent I really have to be honest with you, summer is not my favorite season. Last week we were talking about the fact that all kids have what we call psycho-social- emotional needs.  This means that depending on their developmental stage, they need a certain level of nurturing and supervision, of socialization,  and of stimulation in order to be happy. For those of us who have school-aged children like mine, it means that in the summer when they are less scheduled if they become under-stimulated and under-socialized, they become kind of cranky. I wanted to share 3 survival strategies with you today that I hope will help.

Tip #1

First and foremost, schedule things ahead of time and stay on top of your calendar. For most parents, the whacky schedules that summer camps have and all of their inconsistencies can be a real stressor.  You’re going to be able to keep on top of things more easily if you are looking at your calendar 2 or 3 weeks in advance. If you have a parenting partner, I would highly recommend every weekend sitting down for a few minutes and going over the schedule for the coming weeks. I would also recommend some kind of family calendar system for syncing up things on your phones because there’s a lot to shuttle kids back and forth to and for most of us, work doesn’t stop amidst all of that.

Tip #2

Be prepared for your kids’ screen time to potentially spiral out of control. Every summer I watch this happen with my kids as much as I don’t want it to be the case. Remember that your app store has some really great options where you can actually limit your kids’ device in terms of how many hours they can be on it a day and of course you can set some great parental controls to keep your kids off of the inappropriate websites that you don’t want them on as well. Summer is always a wonderful time to go shopping and buy some new fresh things that can help lure your kids away from their screens – toys, crafts, cooking supplies, outdoor activities, whatever it is that your kids are interested in.  Now is a good time to go pick up some new things to entice them away from their phones and their laptops.

Tip #3

Finally, do not underestimate the power of a play date or a sleep over. This is my go-to when my kids are too bored, too cranky, or sometimes (honestly) just too much on my nerves. Call some friends or neighbors and see if you can “borrow” someone else’s kid for a few hours to keep yours entertained. Good luck to all of you out there! To learn more about the services we offer for kids, teens, & families CLICK HERE.