We all know summer 2020 is likely to be one of the most unusual ever. Normally in early spring, we start to fill our calendars with plans of camps, playdates, and vacations to maximize our family time. But this summer we’re probably canceling plans and having to get creative to keep our kids engaged.
Regardless of what’s on your family calendar, here are some ideas to help set the tone for a successful transition to summer.
- Celebrate! You just completed a school year that was more unusual than anyone could have imagined. Whether you homeschooled on purpose, or because you had to, you can celebrate your kids’ determination and perseverance, and how they have grown in both knowledge and wisdom. Take the time to recognize those strengthened character traits. Just like schools throw end-of-year parties, with treats, certificates, and words of encouragement, you can do all these things at home, too. Already celebrated the end of the school year? Throw a party at home for other reasons—birthdays, summer reading, or learning to swim. Whatever the reason, the whole family can benefit from taking the time to recognize each other’s accomplishments.
- Make the most of your time. You’re navigating a lot of change and trying to keep everyone busy and having fun. Lean into your kids during this time. Kids were created by a heavenly Father with a sense of curiosity, and creativity. Talk to them about their interests, and then make a schedule that allows time for the things they’re excited about. Factoring in returning to work, or continuing to work remotely, paired with kids in the home, can be a challenge, as we learned during quarantine. But, being intentional with your day will be worth the extra effort when kids feel a sense of security, knowing when parents are working and when they have your full attention.
- Reenter at your own pace. At the beginning of this season, there was a common phrase: “we’re all in the same storm, but we’re not all in the same boat.” That still rings true. Only you understand the unique needs and conditions of your family. What is appropriate for your family will look different from what works for your neighbors, friends, and small group. Some are ready to meet at playgrounds and swimming pools, while others may want to wait a while longer. As you navigate what reentry looks like for your family, we must remember to be patient and continue to love and serve one another always.
- Point your kids to Jesus. When we experience stress about the future and conflict arises, set an example for your kids by showing them how to turn to a loving Father, who holds our future in his hands. One way you can do this is by joining the Kidscoast weekend experience at seacoast.org/kidscoastathome. Each week, your family can participate in a Bible teaching, worship together, and have fun while learning about Jesus. Parent Cues are also available to guide important conversations at key times throughout the day.
- Stop for a praise break. Turn up the worship music and dance together, even if you’re not feeling it. If you’re really under a lot of pressure, reach out to a friend, or the church for encouragement and prayer.
Kidscoast is here for you and we would love to help you in your parenting journey. Please email our team if you need additional support.