As summer rolls around, the transition from a school-based schedule to having free time at home offers a bump in the routine road many parents pave during the school year. Although summer camps and recreational programs offer an opportunity to keep your loved one engaged, they also offer a financial obstacle many families cannot overcome. Throughout the summer, we will work to provide parents with tips, activities, and crafts to maintain developmental progress.
We begin this goal by asking parents of individuals with autism for their advice on how to go about handling the transition. Here’s what they had to say:
“Schedules and structure work best and discussing what tomorrow will be like helps with the anxiety I find. For both of you.” – @beautifyl_disaster
“My child’s 9 and is 1 of 5 children two older two younger. What helps us is not changing his home routine as to what he would typically do on a school day, including some work that the school put together in a packet for him, so he wouldn’t lose everything he’d learned over the year. Yet, giving him the time of day to just live in his own world and be himself. We do schedule 2 to 3 days at our local Boys & Girls Club where he can hang out with kids more his age and get him to be active. Also hanging out at either grandparents house who have pools, is a major plus!” – @bratany84
“I invested in a gorilla gym for my kids and we start doing what we call school wind down like planning what fun activities we will do over the summer but we create an art board with pictures and decorations so they can visually see what’s coming up.” – @momof4blessingsiam
“Summer camp for kids with autism does wonders for my son☺” – @armybrat4eva
“We use summer as a time to make the world his class and travel” – @suehoneystravels
“I have a son who is 6 and I put him in summer camp. Most of the schools have it for kids with disabilities and low income for free. More therapy one-on-one and doing some research on what they have going on in your town or public library. Keeping them busy is a good thing and having [your kids chill] out with other kids socializing is big plus.” – @sejficka27
“Change it up a bit if the child can handle it. If not, keep the same schedule from what you have been doing. Get your child involved in activities, friends, so they can socialize. If you live in NY and your child is not afraid of dogs I took two of my 21 year old students on Monday to a bookstore that one of the brothers wanted to go to. The other brother wanted to meet Loubie the dog that hugs. I got in touch with the owner and stated I had two autistic brothers that want to meet your dog.” – @jessicachristine29
These are some general ideas as to how you can ease this transition, but if you are looking for some specific activities or need some ideas to get your own creative juices flowing, here is a guide of 82 Fun Summer Activities for Families with Special Needs that we found may be helpful!
We know how important it is for your children to grow as individuals and we desire to give parents the tools to facilitate that growth. As always, feel free to visit our page here for more information and feel free to contact us through our Help Hotline, where we will respond through email or through a phone call.