Summer Shift

by

Jenna

It’s officially summer!  After the year we all just had, I know that I’m tempted to let it all go – throw structure out the window, sleep all day and forget that school exists – but I know that’s not what’s best for kids.  They need to continue to move toward their goals. Instead, we need to shift thoughtfully into a new routine that allows our kids to find joy while continuing to grow.  Read on for a few ideas about how that might look at your house:

Keep Goals in Mind

The goals we set for our children during the school year – either through the IEP process or informally – are still in place over the summer.  While I don’t advocate intensive work on everything that makes up the school day, I do encourage you to pick 1-2 goals that you and your child can engage in together.  In my house, we find balance by choosing one social-emotional and one academic goal to work on regularly over the summer.  Whatever you do, take note of what seems to work well for your child and what does not; that’s important observational data to have when you begin working with teachers again in the fall.

Reset

Each year we all establish some positive and some less than positive habits.  The shift from the school year to the summer lends itself to a bit of a soft-reset in any way you and your children need it.  For instance, used the summer shift as a reason to reintroduce our family’s chore chart again after taking it down before we moved in November. The most helpful reset for your family might also be a dedicated time for you to center yourself each day so that you can be the best parent possible for your child.  

Daily Routines 

Some of you will have clear routines set by camps and the like, but others will have summers that have little structure.  In either case, set and communicate some daily routines.  All children thrive on structure, and students with disabilities absolutely need it in order to succeed.  That said, maintaining structure does not need to exhaust you.  Maybe meal time can create touch-points during the day, or perhaps you can give each day of the week a theme.  Do something that’s easy for you to maintain, and present it so it’s exciting for your children.  

For more ideas about how to take on the summer shift with your child, reach out today for a free 15 minute brainstorming session.  

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