Thursday, May 28, 2009

Bust Summertime Boredom with 10 Wallet-Friendly Ideas from Primrose Schools

/PRNewswire/ -- School is almost out and children can't wait for summer, but it won't be long until you hear the famous, "I'm bored" from your little ones.

Studies show that without stimulation during the summer months, children can lose up to 60 percent of what they learned throughout the school year. Primrose Schools, a family of 200 accredited private preschools, suggests the key to overcoming summertime boredom and the "brain drain" effect is to encourage imaginative play and have a plan in place to keep children engaged during the summer months.

"It's important to keep children's minds active during the summer, but it doesn't take an expensive activity or big vacation to capture their attention," said Dr. Mary Zurn, Vice President of Education for Primrose. "After all, imagination is free."

Here are 10 ideas parents can use to keep young minds active this summer:

1. Banish the Boredom Jar: Encourage your children to share their own
ideas and help you decorate and label a simple jar as the family
"Banish the Boredom Jar."
2. Stories Alive: Make reading even more fun by finding ways to bring the
stories to life.
3. Art Treasure Chest: Put art supplies, empty oatmeal boxes, paper towel
rolls, and old magazines in a special box to help fuel your children's
creative juices.
4. Family Performances: Break out old clothes or costumes to create a
family play. Record the performances.
5. Fort Building: Let the imagination begin!
6. Cookbook Fun: Ask your children to choose a recipe from your favorite
cookbook and enjoy cooking together.
7. Summer Scrapbook: Encourage everyone in the family to draw pictures of
favorite activities and collect mementos throughout the summer.
8. Listening Game: Lie down in the backyard or den and listen. Talk about
what you hear.
9. Camping Out: Pretend to campout in the backyard.
10. Scavenger Hunt: Make a list or picture cards of common household items
and have your children find the items on the list.

"Keeping children engaged with open-ended activities that stretch their imaginations during the summer months helps them develop their independence, creativity, and thinking," said Dr. Zurn. "We want to help parents keep the 'brain drain' at bay while their children play."

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