3 R’s of Summer:
- RHYTHM – Identify your child’s internal/external time or pace of alertness and plan accordingly.
- RHYME – Create and/or select high interest and novelty activities/tasks.
- ROUTINE – Delineate routines into step-by-step directions that result in safe, achievable expectations.
3 P’s of Summer
Unstructured days can mean the difference between a progression and regression of skills. The “3 P’s of Summer” give you the time to build a houseful of skills that your child needs for the upcoming school year…and for life!
PLAN – Create a visual schedule that is reviewed daily.
- Think of your child’s day in 30 to 60 minute blocks of time and consistently place across the week.
- Include daily life skills like getting up and going to bed, chores, academics, structured and unstructured play time, and free choice into the schedule.
- Identify your child’s internal/external time or pace of alertness and plan accordingly.
- Delineate routines into step-by-step directions that result in safe, achievable expectations.
- Use a roulette wheel of activities to provide interest, but schedule its use.
- Platform to practice the rules for social interactions, cooperation, planning, negotiation, self-management, frustration tolerance, conflict resolution, and problem solving.
- Provide time for structured and unstructured play in schedule.
A lack of structure and routine during summer breaks can make rigorous routines difficult for children struggling with acclimating back to school schedules. The patterning of accessible behaviors is time consuming. When children spend their summers in an ‘anything goes’ environment; their return to school turns into a battle both there and at home. So, if you need a break from routine, take a short one, and make sure you make it a part of the overall schedule. Structure and routine make them feel safe because they know not only what is expected, but how to achieve it.
Just to name a few ways to find structure and routine…
Crafts, camps, vacations, day trips, play dates, zoo, parks, matinees, cooking, gardening, board/card games, reading, individual & group sports, hiking, picnics, biking, skating, book clubs, trampolines, theatres, concerts, drama clubs, music lessons, dance, exercise classes, pottery, sewing, rock-climbing, gymnastics, letter writing, family/friends connections, swimming, kite flying and camping.
Have fun and enjoy your summer!