What to do with the Kids This Summer

Dear Dr. Linda,

Help! Summer isn’t even halfway over and I can’t wait for school to start. Over the past years, you’ve listed activities to do with kids, but my kids were little so I didn’t pay close attention. Now I need some ideas to do with my 8-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son that won’t cost a lot of money. They should have gone to camp, which is what they’ve done in the past, but they wanted to stay home and I naively thought that I could provide a more enriched summer for them. Wrong!


Sign Up for E-News

Dear Rachel,

Hang in there. If you’re willing and able you can still provide a wonderful rest of the summer for your kids. There are so many activities you can do with them at home and away. And you don’t have to do it all by yourself.

Begin by calling your local library, your local colleges and recreation departments. See if they’re offering any summer programs that you can enroll your kids into for one or two days or even an hour or two during the week. Go online and research programs that are being offered by your community or privately in your area. Many accept children all summer. Look into them and see if they’re appropriate for your children.

In addition, here’s a list of activities that will not only be fun and inexpensive, but educational.

• Go to a park. Parks with playgrounds and open spaces for playing ball or throwing a Frisbee are always fun. Good playgrounds usually have a variety of activities for different stages of ability and height so kids of all ages can enjoy them. If the park has a lake, then walk around the lake. Get an inexpensive pedometer to track miles, number of steps and time. Now you’re getting in some math skills.

• Take a picnic. Let your kids help plan and fix what to take. With your help, they can make sandwiches and bake cookies. Kids usually love cooking and it improves reading skills, not to mention practice in following directions. (Double the recipe and you’ll exercise their math skills.)

• Go to the zoo, but don’t just walk around and look. Talk about the animals—how they get food, what they eat, how they live.

• Take day trips to historical sites close by. Combine this with a trip to a local book store or the library to learn more about the site.

• Play board and card games. Playing games with children is not only excellent for their brain development, but for social and emotional development as well.

• Read a book together. Take turns reading. Make up questions to quiz each other. If there’s a companion movie, watch it together and compare and contrast the book with the movie. (Great for higher order thinking skills.)

• Take photos of your activities and put together an album of what you did for the summer.

• Buy activity books. Visit your local book store to find puzzles, mazes, word searches, scrambles, etc. Crossword puzzles are wonderful for building vocabulary.

• Play outside together. Play softball, kickball, badminton, croquet—If you don’t have enough people to set up teams, make up your own rules.

Be creative and your kids will learn how to create and plan activities and entertain themselves.

Have fun,

Dr. Linda

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of TAPinto.net or anyone who works for TAPinto.net. TAPinto.net is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Here's What You Missed Last Week

Last week, the Daily News ran a headline, “When is our father coming home?” This dealt with a person here illegally, married to an American woman with a family, who was arrested at an Army base while delivering pizza. You are supposed to think that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), under Trump, is tearing families apart. As usual, it was a crock of cow pies. It was ...

Watergate Analogies Apply to Obama, Not Trump

My liberal counterpart in this publication is about my age. Maybe I am the baby of the group, but we all have had the same seminal experiences of our youth: Vietnam, the civil rights movement and Watergate. These are what shaped our political perspectives.

Looking back, maybe, just maybe those who thought Nixon was really deserving of his fate cannot be faulted for thinking so. It was once ...

Reagan on Trump

The party of “Honest Abe” has now become the party of Dishonest Don, and what follows are some disturbing displays of a Republican Party that has become devoid of conscience:

• More than 4,600 American citizens dead in Puerto Rico—a postscript to the government’s abysmal response to the widespread devastation of Hurricane Maria; 
• The underhanded ...

The Rich Get Richer, and We’re Paying For It

According to a Harvard University study published late last year, most Americans believe that the richest 20 percent of Americans own just half of the nation’s wealth. Wrong! The top 20 percent own 93 percent of the nation’s wealth, and the top 1 percent own 40 percent of that wealth. Additionally, the top 10 percent of earners in 2017 took home more than half the nation’s ...

Competing—Against Yourself

This is the time of year when students are recognized at public ceremonies for notable achievements in their studies, their sports and in their extracurricular pursuits.

Where we live, there are awards in various sports that are named for our son, who also is memorialized by town ballfield Harrison Apar Field of Dreams and a charitable foundation of the same name.

Due to a rare dwarfism, ...

Honoring Our Veterans’ Freedom of Speech

Memorial Day is over, but writing about America’s veterans doesn’t have an expiration date.

My dad, George, was as proud a veteran as you’d meet. He served in the Army in World War II and loved our country no less than the next veteran. I am proud of him, as is my brother, Robert, who served in the Air Force.

Growing up, the one vacation we took each year was spent with ...

I Come from the Land Down Under

I know this is a family column, so I’m going to put this in as delicate terms as possible.

This morning I woke up and I knew, as sure as the sun shines over Bora Bora, that something was very, very wrong in that place in my body where the Bora Bora sun doesn’t shine.

It’s that place I used to refer to my daughter as her hoo-hoo. But it certainly wasn’t a happy ...

Mouthing Off

When I went for oral surgery last spring, the doctor told me he could only do one half of my mouth that day or I wouldn’t be able to eat for two weeks. Considering it was almost bathing suit season, I didn’t think that was necessarily a bad thing. But he convinced me otherwise, and told me if I was really gung ho about getting it all done, I could come back in a month or so to have ...

Upcoming Events


Wed, June 27, 9:00 AM

Putnam County Department of Health, Brewster

PCDOH Free HIV Testing Day

Health & Wellness