young child in blue shirt with fist out and red cape on, child pretending to be a superhero, a great photo for parents wondering how to keep your kids motivated this summer

Wondering how to keep your kids motivated this summer? If so, there are plenty of parents pondering the same thing. Summer is a much-needed time of rest for your child but too much of a good thing still isn’t healthy.

All that extra summer free time can be a drastic change compared to the previous nine months of strictly regimented schooling. Your kids could struggle to do much of anything this summer if you don’t intervene.

How can you prevent the “summer slump” from settling in for your child? Here are several ideas.

Remember that Your Child has a Need to Feel Purposeful

Yes, your kids are considerably younger than you. That said, they still have the innate need to feel useful and purposeful just as you do. That need is the same for people regardless of their age. Parents often forget this important point when it comes to their kids.

How can you help your child to meet this need? Certainly not by nagging them.

Instead, you can share with your child about how they have a need for purpose. Brainstorm together to come up with solutions to end their boredom and feelings of aimlessness.

In her Psychology Today article entitled, “How to Motivate Children Through Purpose,” Kate Roberts, Ph.D. shares the following:

Have your child define who they want to be and how they want to live and help them to identify how they can achieve this through their daily actions and what they need to learn to accomplish their dreams.”

What is your child really saying when they tell you they’re bored? Deep down, they’re telling you, “I don’t want to squander my potential. Could you please help me figure this out?”

How to Keep Your Kids Motivated this Summer: Limit Screen Time

Screen time isn’t always bad. There are those rainy days where surfing the net, playing video games or watching movies just make sense. That said, this shouldn’t be the norm. Limiting your child’s screen time each day is the best option.

Limiting screen time will allow you and your child to interact on a deeper level and will help your child to feel more purposeful. Plus, this will allow your child to be more active.

Encourage Your Child to Exercise their Bodies and Brains Daily

Your child just spent the past nine months mostly sitting at a desk. Summer isn’t the time to continue that trend. Your child needs to exercise body (and their mind) this summer.

To encourage a more active body for your child, you can try:

  • Taking walks with your child
  • Going on a hike with your child in nature
  • Taking a bike ride together
  • Enrolling your child in a summer sport
  • Buying your child a membership to the local community pool

To encourage a more active brain for your child, you can try:

  • Going to the library with your child so they can pick out books
  • Encourage your child to watch a documentary online they find fascinating
  • Have them write a letter to one of their friends
  • Buy your child some art materials and encourage them to be creative
  • Enroll your child in a day camp of some kind
  • Have your child listen to an online audiobook before bed 

Could You and Your Child Use Some Additional Help this Summer?

If you and your child have been struggling mentally or relationally, the summer can be a great time to get the help you need. It’s often easier to set aside time and unpack your struggles without the constant demands of school schedules.

If you could use some help from a trained professional, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Valencia Relationship Institute can provide evidence-based solutions to the challenges you and your child may be facing.

You can schedule an appointment with us and start working towards a healthier family life. Valencia Relationship Institute provides counseling in Valencia, CA and the surrounding areas.