April-May-June are here and that brings summer break of 2 months for most children in Gujarat. Children are relieved from their usual routine of going to school / college and get a break from studies. Why do students and teachers get such a long time off? This is because brain needs time to develop and a break from studies gives brain and the body to rejuvenate.
Most children day dream about vacation when they study for exams and when actual vacation comes they forget about the plan waste it. I would recommend that students should write down any such day dream / idea / thought when it comes during the normal days. Then not read it until the exam is over. That will serve two purpose- firstly, the mind gets focused back to studying and secondly, when the vacation actually comes you have a list of things you wish to do. That will save a lot of time and give you the vacation of your dreams.
There are a few set things which people do in vacation:
- Travel: A lot of people travel around state, around country and around the world in this break. The idea is to spend nice time with family, see new places, relax and do some good activities. The best vacations are not necessarily where you spend a lot of money. However, in routine life you don’t spend good time with your children. Travelling together can help parents and children bond together and know each other better. Children observe parents in different scenarios – both stressful and relaxing and imitate them. Taking a child to see what they are interested in, be it amusement park, museum, sightseeing or shopping is also contributing to developing their mind.
To plan for a good travel vacation set the priority objective first – is it family time or visiting relatives or seeing a new place or entertaining the children. So you can ensure that maximum time is allocated to the most important objectives. I have seen that families end up bored without any common interest activities and hence if you want to spend time with family – ensure that you plan some common interest activities.
- Summer workshops: A recent trend in cities is to enroll children in summer workshops. These are workshops which introduce children to new hobbies, skills and activities which they don’t have time for in routine life. They may or may not be costly. The summer workshops are usually done by classes, schools and organizations. The objective of summer workshop is introduction to various activities and not to make them expert at it. So in case you enroll your child for a dance workshop – then they wouldn’t be trained for a Reality Show within a month. However, in case there is a hidden dancer in your child – they would get discovered. Don’t enroll your child to do want you want to do, rather ask the child his/ her interest and let him do that.
Summer workshops are a great way to engage a child productively and make them pursue their interests. Talk to various mothers in your child’s class and see what kind of programs they have discovered. The best programs are those which are not advertised much. So start searching for such now and enroll before they get full.
- Staying at home or at grandparents home: This has been a traditional way to spend vacation – doing nothing in particular. This is also a great to relax. Children need important time in a year to let them wake with no particular plan in mind. This is can help boost creativity. However you have to handle this with care. With so many options available to make the child lazy it is quite possible that the children engage them in unproductive activities. This may include watching TV, playing games on computer, tablet, mobile instead of with real friends outside. Older children get hooked on to internet surfing which is usually unsafe.
A good use would be to read a book, play indoor / outdoor games with friends, cousins and neighbours. A mix of physical and mental exercises would develop the child and help them perform better when they return to their studies. Making them study say a few hours every week especially for the subjects which the child falls behind in class is of a great help to improve academic results.
Today’s children need a lot more attention then they used to 10 years ago. As parents right now is a great time to figure out a broad outline you would want your child to spend the vacation. Remember summer break comes only once in a year and ensure that you use it wisely!