Summer can present some planning challenges for working parents of young children. Swim lessons, special camps, amusement parks, and special field trips can require planning, transportation, work schedule flexibility, and affordability. But, there are plenty of solutions for some summer fun.
Check out these places for affordable and fun summer activity options.
1. Your child’s daycare has summer fun in the works.
Most daycare facilities undergo an exciting transformation in the summer months from their established program. Many facilities have kid-crazed warm-weather activities to keep children enrolled in their program, and by the numbers of happy kids participating in summer fun, it works! Daycares typically package weekly sessions involving field trips; swimming, water parks or splash days; art and music enrichment offerings; sports outings; and more activities that just shout summer fun. And, transportation to these activities is generally provided as part of the summer fun weekly fee.
2. Check out your area community center for summer fun.
Many communities have taken advantage of recreation centers and parks to offer reasonable child care during the summer and weeks when children are out of school. Sometimes a city promotes summer fun child-care camps as a community service for its residents and charges only enough to cover expenses and salary. A possible advantage to using recreation center care is if a parent only needs a few weeks covered and wants certain summer fun days or activities for kids. Many centers structure the fees on a week-by-week option, which allows for summer fun planning flexibility. Parents shouldn’t delay, however, in signing up. Since spaces are limited, slots often fill up.
3. Consider utilizing college students on break for some summer fun for your kids.
Students home for the summer from college are often hungry for a job and at the same time are optimum resources for summer fun for your kids. Sometimes, parents already know the individual from previous years, and perhaps he or she has babysat for you previously. For parents seeking summer fun times or select times only solution, this arrangement works much like babysitting, although parents will typically set a daily fee. With some planning and structure, this set-up can serve as a mini-summer fun camp for your kids.
4. Explore your child’s school.
Confused? Don’t be. Some school districts are now starting to take advantage of their facilities that have not been used traditionally in summer months and offer summer fun camps of their own. The advantages are that the tuition fees often provide much-needed revenue for the school district and the staff is typically comprised of teachers and assistants already employed by the school. In fact, the summer camp leader could very well be your child’s own teacher.
5. Start a neighborhood co-op.
Round up parents of similar-aged children in your neighborhood and start a summer fun program for your kids. Parents could alternate care and plan and carry out a fun outing for all participants for assigned days. There typically is no money that changes hands; the pay-off is that everyone equally takes turns and plans an enjoyable and safe day. Meeting and agreeing to a calendar of activities and events is advised.