Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Structured Summer Fun

The countdown is on... Only a few more weeks until school is out for the summer. I haven't decided yet whether this countdown is precursory to a nuclear bomb going off in my household or more akin to that of a rocket blasting off to fun and adventure for three months of summer vacation.

Summer vacation is a big deal around our home; it's not just something that affects our four-year old son, Kurt, who attends preschool twice a week and a German preschool on Saturdays. My husband is a high school teacher, so he's home for the summer, too. This means our entire family is home and will either really get on each other's nerves or genuinely enjoy one another's company for three months that have the potential to be excruciatingly long or a whole heckuva lot of fun.

The days that my son is home from preschool - Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday -are usually good days, but sometimes things don't go so well. My son is a very active, curious little boy who probably needs a bit more structure than I provide for him at home. As an only child, he gets a little lonely oftentimes, and on the days we don't see any friends, I am his only playmate. He doesn't play that well on his own yet (some days are better than others in this regard), and I find that he is still pretty needy of my attention. I'm a pretty laid back person who often times lacks the skills needed to effectively stucture and maintain order in my days. I usually just roll with the punches, but sometimes the hits my son can dish out are a little rough...

This summer, I've decided that I desperately need to put some significant structure into our days. In an effort to save some money and give my son a break from school (3 days a week was a lot for my little guy this year), we won't send him to any kind of summer "camp." The last two years, Kurt attended summer "camp" at his preschool two days per week for about half of the summer. We also visited my parents for three weeks, so that took care of basically the entire summer vacation. This summer, Kurt will have swimming lessons in June every day for a 10-day session. We'll also go on a two-week vacation. Other than that, we'll be here at home. So, I need to figure out some ways to provide some structured activities into our days before all hell breaks loose and I lose my mind.

So far, I only have two ideas to provide some routine into our summer days: every Tuesday, we'll attend a science and math storytime at the library from 2-3 PM, and every Friday morning our playgroup gets together. I have a few other ideas, too, but they are not day or time specific. For example, my son just started riding a big-kid bike with training wheels. I figured, the three of us could all go for an early morning bike ride after breakfast before the day heats up to Hades-like temperatures (we live in Houston). It might even be better to make this an evening activity, perhaps a few days a week, so that my son doesn't get too gassed out before his mid-morning swimming lesson. I'd also like to include a few swimming days in our week, as our subdivision has a pool and my son just loves to frolick and play in the water.

That's all I've come up with so far. I'm wondering if any of you have some tips as to how to provide more structure to my days with a preschool aged child. I'm open to any and all advice. :0)

1 comment:

  1. Hi! I know we've been to each other's blogs. I have no idea what it is like to have hubby home for a whole summer, but I do know that structure is good. Too much structure makes it feel like you're in a prison. If you schedule an activity for Tuesday and Wednesdays, it frees up the weekends for a trip or fun times. When you aren't traveling, you can have stay at home activities---kind of like homeschooling. I also have my kids join the library reading contests each year--keeps them reading instead of going nuts with electronics.