Summer freedom is just around the corner and as much as we are all looking forward to this warm season of lazy days and adventures, there are children who will definitely struggle with the transition. Any child who has trouble dealing with shifts in schedules, holiday plans, and unstructured days is likely to need a little extra support during the break. We offer additional ABA therapy hours for children who are receiving FAC services since they no longer have the time constraints associated with their school schedule. Here are a few more things that might help:
1. Avoid Developing Bad Habits
As easy as it is to relax into the expanse of a relaxing summer day of nothing, try to keep to a regular schedule as much as possible. The more you can keep to a routine for meals, screen time, sleep, and other daily activities, the more likely your child is to stay on track and remain well-regulated. Maintaining a routine and upholding normal house rules, even in the summer, can help prevent your child from reaching their breaking point.
2. Make Plans but Always Have a Backup
Summer is the perfect time to add extra socializing to your schedule. Get out there and play at the park, join the community pool, or set your child up with close friends for a playdate. If your child has exceptional difficulties, join an online group that sets up playdates and meetings in order to surround yourself with other parents who will understand your child and any of their limitations. Help your child prepare for an adjusting schedule by implementing a plan and a backup plan. and letting them know up front about it as sometimes things like rain or a cancelled outing can be upsetting to everyone. Let your child know that if we don’t do X, we’ll be doing Y instead, just so they have some comfort in knowing how the day might develop.
3. Develop Summer Traditions
Help your child prepare for the inevitability of facing another Summer break transition next year by implementing a few fun traditions into the end-of-school routine. Make the same dinner on the last day of school every year. Do a specific activity like going to the movies, the zoo, or a bookstore on the first day of break and stick to the same activity next year. Maybe even make it a weekly tradition all summer that you all look forward to. Just try to develop something that every year your child can count on in the early days of summer than helps them feel a little more grounded each year.
Overall, the most important thing about summer is to try to enjoy it as much as possible. Raising children, they say the days are long, but the years are short. You typically only get 13 summer breaks with your child, so make the most of this one!