Here are some tips that you can put in place TODAY! to make your transition from the school year into summer easier. If you are already on summer break and having a hard time getting your kiddo transitioned into summer, you can hit “redo” and implement many of these tips!
If you are not yet transitioned in, do a count down. Grab a big calendar and put the date for the start of summer and the end of summer on the calendar. You can circle it with a green marker or use any color your child loves to help get them to pay attention that THAT day. Then, grab a red (or some other opposite color from the one you chose) and start making X’s on each day as you get closer to the transition. Have your child help you do this so that they can SEE when their summer is about to start. Do this throughout the summer as part of your daily routine, leading up to their next transition (e.g., the first day of camp, school, etc).
Next, you will want to create a routine. Just like your child has a daily routine for the school year, you will want to create a daily routine for the summer. This may feel like work on your part, initially, but it will make your day-to-day SO much easier. So put that time in up front! You will be happy you did! Your schedule is just that, your own, so be sure to put on the schedule whatever you may be doing as a part of each day so your child is prepared and aware.
Stick to the routine as much as possible. Of course things WILL come up. That’s life. But the closer you can stick to the routine, the easier your day and your child’s day will be. And that will lead to an easier summer overall.
Consider a social skills group or camp. If there are camps that include children with special needs and//or if you can find a camp group that specializes in working in speech, language and/or social skills that are in alignment with what YOUR child needs to work on, consider signing them up for a week or two. Being with new people can be a healthy and great challenge to work on communication and social skills.
And last but not least, use a visual mini story. If your kiddo benefits from seeing things in pictures, create a story. SHOW them what they will be doing this summer, each day, next week, etc. Then use the story to review as you go through the motions of the day/activity. It is SUPER helpful when you can help them understand what they are expected to do next. When they know what to expect, the day goes much smoother.
Here is to a fun and fabulous summer! We look forward to chatting with you over on our facebook page so be sure to connect with us and let us know what YOU need! We will be here with you with fun ideas for entertaining your little (and big!) ones!
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Hallie Bulkin is a Certified Speech-Language Pathologist. She strives to help others receive the support they need to make a positive change in their children’s communication skills. If you’d like to know more about helping your child communicate, Hallie is happy to answer your questions.
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