How to Keep Play Alive This Summer

Category: Play Therapy

Many children have seen drastic changes in their lives at this time, and it is no surprise that we are all struggling to figure out ways to have fun during these challenging times.  I cannot stress the importance that everyone needs to take a break from watching, reading, and listening to the news, including on social media outlets. 

It is easy to become inundated with stress and concerns if you or your children are being over exposed to the news.  Once unplugged, it is essential that we take care of our mind and bodies. 

Taking care of ourselves includes taking deep breaths, stretching, and trying new things such as meditation or yoga to quiet the mind and reduce stress.  If you and your kids have never been exposed to yoga or meditation, now is a great time to learn and there are plenty of books, websites and apps dedicated to helping people learn these skills. 

If meditation and yoga are not your thing, no problem, just find some activity that incorporates the importance of breathing and slowing down the mind.  Once, you and your kids feel more grounded, and more at ease, then it is also essential to remember the importance of a well-balanced diet. 

This summer is unique in that many parents and children will be home together for extended periods of time.  If you were to look at tasks that you usually do and find room and ways to be more inclusive with your children, you just may end up having fun along the way. 

One new way to have fun and explore this summer, is to allow your children to take over or try some of the tasks you usually do. 

You can ask your children if anyone is interested in finding new recipes to cook, or if any of them have an interest in doing meal planning for the family for a night or two during the week. 

Many of us, are now online grocery shopping, and many children would love to be a part of this process.  You can gain insight and information on foods they like and dislike and would like to try. 

You can even have them try to do the grocery shopping online, and then review the order before it is processed with them. 

Once your food arrives, you may find one child likes to organize and put the groceries away while another is planning for dinner. 

This is a great opportunity to get into the kitchen with your kiddos and teach them safe ways to prepare and cook meals. 

Along the way, you may discover a new talent or skill your child has, and this is the perfect opportunity to reinforce it by encouraging their active participation in meal planning, preparation and cooking. 

To foster fun this summer, do not forget the essentials.  Unplug, focus on breathwork and stress reduction and look for ways to be inclusive with your children. 

Give your child the opportunity to try new things such as yoga, meditation, meal planning, meal preparation and cooking.  If they are not interested in any of the above, encourage them to explore and try new things so they can discover new things that they enjoy doing.

By: Amber Sanner, LMFT