The sun has finally come out so we begin to think of the School summer holidays. Parents worry about how to keep the kids entertained. Long summers can be great, but they can also cause tension around childcare arrangements, money and activities.
Relate offers some tips for having a summer holiday the whole family can enjoy.
Have a planning session
It might be impossible to make sure everyone gets what they want from the summer holiday. Draw up a list of what everyone wants. It’s better to explain to children at this point that not all is possible. Planning is important, as it makes all feel they’re contributing and being listened to, it’s especially important if you’re separated or living in a step family as it might be different from what everyone is used to.
This includes helping children to understand that you need to work even though they’re not at school, and you can’t entertain them all the time. Don’t be afraid to talk about money – if they want to do something you can’t afford, be honest with them and work out a cheaper alternative together.
Summer is a time to have fun without spending too much, because you can be outdoors. Getting everyone to help pack a picnic, enjoying your local park or green space
and playing sports are all free. Look for free activities locally.
It’s almost inevitable that there will be arguments when you’re spending concentrated time together and the routine changes. It’s ok to argue – a normal part of family life.
It’s how you resolve arguments that matters. Once things have cooled down, take the time to talk an argument through and ask that each party apologises ( might include you!) It’s good for children to see conflict being resolved in a calm way.