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In only a few weeks, school will be out and your children willsuddenly have endless hours of free time at their disposal. Withoutproper planning, summer vacation can be a wasted opportunity forlearning and growth in children of any age. Teachers and parentsalike worry that during this time off, children will loseeverything they’ve learned over the school year. Studies show thatthe average child loses between one and three months of schoollearning over the summer, making this a valid concern. Below,you’ll find five helpful suggestions for things your childrenshould be engaging in this summer. These activities and experienceswill keep your kids sharp and interested, and in turn make thembetter students come fall.

1. Your kids should be reading.

By far the most important item on this list, your childrenshould spend as much time as possible this summer reading newmaterial. One of the easiest ways for them to stay sharp and expandtheir knowledge, reading can be a fun activity. Don’t limit yourchildren to books alone – explore other options like educationalmagazines, workbooks and even online articles. Check with yourchild’s school or a local library to see if they offer a suggestedsummer reading list.

2. Your kids should be moving.

On average, children and adolescents need about one hour ofphysical activity a day. During the busy school year, most kidsdon’t get nearly this much exercise. Find ways during the summer toencourage your children to play outdoors, whether swimming, bikingor engaging in team sports. Allowing your kids to develop healthyhabits now will not only improve their physical well-being, butkeep them sharp and focused when it’s time to learn.

3. Your kids should be watching.

Many parents find their children watching endless hours of TVduring the summer, so why not choose to make this time a learningopportunity? Satellite TVoffers a wide array of educational programming, specifically in therealms of science and geography. Spend some time watching theseprograms with your kids, then discuss pertinent issues and topicsyou’ve seen. Leading satellite TVproviders also offer original, award-winning channels withengaging content approved by leading childhood experts. This is agreat way to get more value out of the time your kids spend infront of the television.

4. Your kids should be traveling.

While most people can’t afford or accommodate a week off of workto take their family on exotic vacations, summer travel is alwaysan option. Invaluable to young children, travel expands horizonsand increases tolerance, making for minds that are more open tolearning. If you can’t manage a traditional vacation, take one ortwo weekend trips to landmarks or unusual places near your home.Unique experiences, whether near or far, undoubtedly have apositive impact on developing minds.

5. Your kids should be interacting.

Used to spending five days a week surrounded by peers, manychildren have a hard time adjusting to the isolation summervacation brings. Make a conscious effort to maintain yourchildren’s relationships with other kids, and try to plan regulargroup activities. Keeping your children socialized over the summeris a surefire way to ensure their transition into the learningenvironment of school is a smooth one.

Courtesy of ARAcontent

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