Enjoy quality summer vacation with your children

By: Faten Azzam, Senior Information Specialist – Children’s Library
Translation into English: Abolhaggag Bashir – Arabic Content Editor
parents cooking with children

Many parents face challenges with their children during the summer vacation. Some children waste their time without achieving certain goals through random gaming, chatting aimlessly with friends, sitting idle watching screens for long periods and having irregular sleeping patterns. As summer is in full swing, parents need more creative ideas for a fun and meaningful summer vacation with their children.

During summer, parents can create a stimulating home environment by designing family activities that play a key role in developing many cognitive, motor and social skills. Identifying the skills and hobbies of your children and their strengths and weaknesses should be at the top of your agenda. 

We’re happy to offer you the following interesting and varied home-based activities such as cooking, crafts, reading and scientific experiments. You’ll also find ideas to promote reading, link your child to the world of books and instill a love of reading in them.

Cook a Delicious Dish with Your Child!

What is your child's favorite meal? Do they like pizza, salad or carrot juice? You can borrow several cookbooks written for children that contain recipes with all the necessary ingredients and steps to prepare various meals. Your child’s experience of cooking with their parents will create beautiful and happy memories. Along with enabling your children to acquire thinking, creativity and cooperation skills, joint cooking activities motivate them to discover the outside world by discussing and talking about the meal, such as the recipe’s country of origin and historical background. It also allows them to apply what they have learned in school in a new context through experiment and discovery, such as measuring and weighing ingredients and rolling out the dough according to specific dimensions.

Below are some suggested books:

Draw and Create with Your Child

children

Does your child love drawing and artwork? Many psychologists and educators agree that artistic expression is a source of joy and mental stimulation. It boosts children’s mental, intellectual, aesthetic, emotional and social development and reflects their perception of the world around them.

You can develop drawing and creativity skills and strengthen your child's delicate hand muscles through creative drawing and artwork activities. You can borrow books that teach the steps of drawing characters and objects children see in their environment, as well as show them how to make engaging artwork with simple tools available at home.

Below are some suggested books that contain various artistic ideas:

Science Around Us

children lab scienceChildren have boundless curiosity about the natural world around them. Learning fun, educational scientific experiments at an early age satisfies that curiosity and makes them more likely to embrace scientific research and exploration in the future. These interactive and engaging learning methods also teach them facts about science. All of this contributes to improving their sensory abilities and increasing their knowledge of the world. The Library provides many books with simple scientific experiments that you can perform at home with your children. Here are some of the suggestions:

Enjoy Reading in the Summer

Summer vacation has begun, and this is a great opportunity to enhance and maintain our children's reading skills. Numerous studies have shown a decline in children's reading, writing and arithmetic skills during summer vacation, especially primary school children. Therefore, it is the responsibility of parents to provide engaging educational opportunities that develop children’s skills and prepare them for the upcoming school year. Reading stories is one of the most important and best ways to enhance children's skills. Parents can also design and implement creative reading activities. Here are some ideas!

Family Reading Challenge

reading log

Let's make reading an engaging and fun activity for children and move away from prescriptive and methodical assignments. Help them choose the stories and books they prefer to read and encourage them to fill out this reading journal and take notes using words or pictures. Then, hold a family session on the weekend where your children can talk about the stories and books they have read.

You can engage with your children by selecting stories through the Library’s website and borrowing them through this link.

The Library offers a limited number of “Reading Diary" brochures, and you can get a copy by visiting our building. Use the above link to book your visit.

Let's Build a Home Library!

family reading

Work with your children on building the home summer library. Let them be involved in all details. Choose a location that works for everyone, like the living room. Designate shelves by age, with lower shelves for younger children and upper shelves for adults. 

Let your kids choose books that match their interests. Design and create a unique library banner with creative artwork drawn by your children. You can add a small reading tent with comfy cushions or a foam sofa and soft light for bedtime stories. 

It is necessary to set an example for your children and read in front of them every day so that reading becomes a daily habit. One of the most popular ways for children to feel emotionally comfortable, safe and satisfied is bedtime stories. Try to read a short story to your children every day. And don't forget to hug them to make those moments overflowing with love and tenderness to build a positive relationship between your children and the world of reading.

My Fun Diary

Take pictures of your children doing activities in the summer, such as reading, drawing, cooking, playing with a ball and visiting relatives.  Provide them with an attractive diary and work with them to design its cover. Brainstorm a title with them, such as, “My Summer Diary” or “Summer Fun.” Encourage them to draw pictures and write simple phrases about the activities they are doing to describe how much they enjoy them. Encourage youngsters to express themselves by drawing. All of this motivates them to have a sense of accomplishment, encourages them to keep practicing, develops their creative writing skills and provides them with an opportunity to express their thoughts and feelings.

You can also encourage them to show their diary to their friends and teachers at the beginning of the school year and talk about how their summer vacation was stimulating and fulfilling.

Further readings:

You can read more below on loss of learning and reading during summer: 

(2019, June 07). Summer learning loss and how to prevent it. Retrieved June 21, 2021.

 

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