We’ve all heard of the summer slide – the loss of academic skills and other developmental skills over the summer. Try these fun and simple ideas for home to keep those skills going strong all summer long!
As parents, we have mixed emotions about summer. It’s the perfect time to catch up as a family, take a few trips, play outside, relax and recoup. But this summer may have a layer of stress that we weren’t expecting. If your child was home for an extended period over the last year, you may notice that they need a little bit of support with building or maintaining their skills so that they are ready when the 2021-2022 school year rolls around in a few months.
As pediatric moms who are also OTs and PTs, we know that the last thing parents want for the summer is the burden of acting as their child’s teacher or therapist during time off of school. So, we have put together a list of fun things around the house that you can use to sneak in some practice of the skills your kiddo was working on at school to prevent the summer slide!
Click on each of the numbered links to get more information!
We have been a part of this amazing new platform for a few months now and we are excited to share it with you as a resource for finding the support of other parents or reaching out to professionals who can offer their 2 cents about anything your child may be struggling with. If you’re a therapist, the platform is also an awesome side hustle idea! Professionals can offer their own storefronts where they can offer virtual services and resources to clients for a fee in addition to free services.
On Vitalxchange, The Inspired Treehouse provides themed activity ideas 3 times per week in our Fun Skill Building Activities for Kids group that are easily replicated at home for building fine, gross and sensory motor skills. Our storefront also offers Virtual Play Groups for Kids that parents can access from all over the world! Download the Vitalxchange app and check out the links above!
These 10 board games (and card games) are the perfect way to keep kids actively engaged in handwriting tasks – trust me, they’re way more fun than that boring old worksheet!
3 || Stairs
Do you have stairs in your home? Whether it’s a big staircase from the first floor to the second floor or just a few small steps from the garage or patio, stairs can be a great prop for fun activities for kids using stairs for kids that target many different developmental skills.
4 || Couch Cushions
All of these couch cushion games are super fun ways to build balance, motor control, strength, and proprioception. Try them for yourself and let us know what you think! I have a feeling that your kids will be having so much fun, you’ll probably want to get in on the action yourself!
5 || A playground ball
Balls can be used indoors or out, they can be dribbled, bounced, tossed, kicked or caught, and they can be large or small. One thing is for sure, kids love balls! And, they can be pretty awesome for strengthening the core which is important for posture in the classroom chair, handwriting, and more!
6 || Roughhousing around
From a developmental perspective, rough and tumble play is one of the most amazing opportunities for sensory input and gross motor skill-building. Oh and…it’s SUPER fun!
7 || Paper bag
Simple, cheap, effective and super easy to find! Check out these fun games and activities using paper bags!
8 || A balloon (or two!)
Who doesn’t have at least one balloon lying around and what kid doesn’t love batting around at something so colorful and floaty? We’ve even turned balloons into some of our favorite DIY fidget toys for kids! Check out these fun balloon games for kids!
Try some of these easy games with bed sheets to boost balance, core strength, sensory processing, and more!
If you have a bunch of old magazines lying around, they can inspire so many creative activities for kids! Here are five ways to entertain your child while building strong visual and fine motor skills along the way.
The ideas above are perfect to try with your kids at home – or, if you’re a therapist, recommend these links to the families on your caseload for continued practice all summer long!