Most kids despise transitions. They like routines, the safety of knowing what’s coming next.
Give them at least two weeks to settle down into the new summer schedule, whether it’s more time at home, with relatives or at camp or summer school. Until they settle down, cut them extra slack when they are quick to anger, resist doing chores and squabble with you and siblings more often.
Expect less and show more patience during the two weeks of transition. You’ll be calmer by adjusting expectations and having a plan.
If you have the revolving door of college students, have a family meeting or at least a chat about how you expect them to contribute, keep track of their belongings and communicate about their whereabouts.
The start of summer is a good reason to have a family meeting with kids of all ages to set up summer plans for fun, chores, routines and agreements on screen time. Figure out a way that they will self-monitor screen time so you’re not the cop.
Family meetings pay off in the long run because they engender every positive characteristic you want kids to develop. They especially promote the priceless gift of connection that eventually keeps tweens and teens making good independent decisions.
Whatever you do with your toddlers, school age, tweens and teens this summer, make sure it involves some outdoor time reveling in the woods. Allow them to feel boredom without plugging into a screen. They will discover resource and creativity through boredom. It is a problem they can solve without plugging in. Remember the four most powerful words in the English language: You can do it.
How do you handle the big transitions around the school calendar? Do your kids act out?