The school year is winding down for kids across Wisconsin. As excited as kids (and parents!) can be about the start of summer, transitions can be challenging. Whether your kids are staying home with a parent during the summer months, going to a child care program, or even continuing in their current childcare location, they are bound to notice some changes. You can help your child have a smooth transition by using the same tips you might have used to ease them into the school year last fall:
Establish a routine. Long hours of daylight lend themselves to lazy, casual schedules. Having a regular meal time, rest time, bed time, and wake up time can keep kids from feeling out of sorts- and it still leaves plenty of time for spontaneity in between!
Limit the use of screen entertainment. Yes, this includes PBS Kids! Use the Learning Triangle (outlined below) to "View, Do, Read" based on a theme that interests your child. For example, on today's episode of Curious George, George tries to paint. After watching the episode, get out some finger paints and watch as your child creates their own masterpiece! Then read a book together about painting or art. Use the PBS Kids Bookfinder site to find age-appropriate titles for any theme.
Get moving. Physical activity is so important, and can help burn off all the energy those little bodies seem to have an endless supply of! Give kids something to dig into- sidewalk chalk, a homemade obstacle coarse, hopscotch, or a scavenger hunt. None of these have to be complicated- Try this printable Nature Treasure Hunt from Dinosaur Train.
Keep a calendar. Helping kids know when something out of the ordinary is coming makes them feel like part of the action. Let them know about upcoming trips, visits, nights with babysitters... anything outside of the usual routine.