It sounds like they are having a good summer! Summer is meant to be relaxed and memorable. Are they having behavior problems? Did their teachers recommend extra schooling or computer games to get them ready for the next school year?
My eight year old son is in a book club that meets on Tuesday mornings and has a tutoring session on Thursday mornings for one hour but other than that he doesn't have a schedule. I have seen behavior changes in him if he watches too much tv (ie cartoons) so we limit his tv watching by using tv tickets. He gets 14 tickets for the week and each ticket is worth 1/2 hour of tv or 50 cents to be turned back into me.
Our schedule is similar but every morning Mon_ Fri she does some school work. Not lots just a few pages of Math & reading or language. She knows no TV or out until it is done. We start in August coming in a little earlier & getting to bed. Every week a half an hour earlier.(07/20/2005)
I agree, let them kickback. My only advice is once a week, visit library. Do something constructive and also not to let them get in the habit of sleeping in and in and in...my grand daughter is allowed to sleep until 11-12 everyday and I HATE IT, I feel it breeds a lax and lazy habit with no initiative! As they get older you can add structured activities, swim team, tennis, rec-board activities to keep the initiative going! (07/20/2005)
Lucky children! Summer should be a no-routine time. They are building memories that will bring them enjoyment for the rest of their routine-driven lives. (07/21/2005)
Summer is for fun. You should be thrilled that are they are playing outside instead of being glued to the computer. Kids NEED to play! (06/06/2006)
I like the idea of TV Tickets. I may try using that! I am the evil step mom that stopped them from watching countless of hours of tv every day and limited them to one hour....TV Tickets makes it more of a fun game for them, while also teaching responsibility.
During the first summer of being 'step-mom' I used a rigid schedule...I worked from home and they had been spoiled by grandma so much that they were unruly...they also had issues with too many video games changing their behavior, so I limited it to 30 minutes during school days and 1 hour during the summer.
They woke up and had breakfast at 8 and then got ready for the day, played outside, and then I had them do worksheets till lunch time. The worksheets I printed from online and they were grade appropriate for the coming year. I helped them minimally, but it was better to have them quietly ask me questions than the run around the house being noisy while I tried to concentrate (we had a very small house).
Then lunch, then they would watch some TV and play video games and then do chores. By that time I was done working and I would have them play outside or in their rooms while I made dinner...and occasionally they would help with dinner. The following year, the kids excelled at school and our 8 year old already knew all his times tables for 3rd grade before it even started. He aced his SOL's.
Now that we have moved to a bigger house, the kids are more in control, and there is more space for them to roam...they are used to playing more without video games and TV as a crutch, so I have been more relaxed but I did get them in a day camp for a week, took them to VBS at church for a week, they took swimming lessons one week, and they have been going to the library twice a week with their grandma and to the pool once a week, so she still gets to spend time with them. They also have free movies on Tuesday mornings at our local theater for kids, so she will at times take them there. That way they get out of the house and have fun, but also learn and behave.
The house is a lot more peaceful but if you're not a home-worker, all the time they spend with you is doing them good regardless. It's less time they have outside influences, and more time they learn the value of family, if they just do some workbook activities for an hour each day and maybe computer instead of TV at night, they will learn and enjoy it (kids actually thrive in structure and discipline - our 6 year old asked me for a summer schedule!) and they will definitely be leaps ahead of the other school kids the coming year...
Hope this helps! (08/06/2007)
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