No doubt, summer should be a time for kids to relax and recharge while they enjoy their freedom from a structured school year routine.
While it’s certainly a time to let loose and maybe even break some rules, it’s also the perfect opportunity to learn about important healthy habits, like spending time outside and eating fresh fruits and veggies.
Of course, when things like video games, the Internet, TV shows and ice cream have the majority of their attention during this time of year, getting your kids remotely interested in anything else can pose a real challenge.
So, what can you do to make sure your kids stay healthy and happy while still enjoying their summertime freedom?
As a parent, one of the first and most important steps is to simply set a good example.
“Let them see you making the healthier choices,” says holistic health coach Ann Musico. “The example you set carries more weight than you realize.”
And from there, you can try incorporating some of the following creative, expert-suggested ideas— all intended to help you help your kids enjoy some truly healthy summertime fun.
Go on a Storytelling Hike
“Find a kid-friendly hike or walk nearby,” suggests Julie Austin, creator of the kid-friendly wrist water bottle, Swiggies. “Go with several friends. One person starts a story and the next person picks up where they left off. By the end of the hike or walk you should have a very interesting story.” Austin says infusing creativity into outdoor activities can help to develop better brain functions.
Build a Mini Golf Course in Your Backyard
“The very first miniature golf course was made out of stove pipes and wagon wheels,” said Ausitn. “You could be creative and use decorated boxes and cardboard with holes cut out.” Lisa Baker-King, a nationally recognized and televised family author and coach adds, “Connect critical thinking skills and creativity by having the kids build a mini golf course. The trick is they can't use any 'real' golf items. Use plastic cups, sticks and a small bouncy ball. [It’s] geometry in action!”