Be Prepared for School Holidays


Make school holidays more enjoyable for you and the children. Organize the family in advance.

By Jo Ann Sheldon and Norma J. Heller

 

Your children need not go away to enjoy school vacations. Make the days more pleasant for you and the children by preparing for the holidays ahead of time. Simply follow these tips:

Plan ahead
Start now to plan around your children's vacation and holiday schedule for the whole year. Planning ahead will reduce last minute stress for you and your children. Review your children's school schedule. Take a look at your FamilyTime calendar. Figure out if you will be available to be with your child on their days off. Go to FamilyTime Calendar.

If you're not available, start now to call family and friends to ask them to commit to spend time with your child. Look for a competent and reliable person such as a grandparent who can take the children for the day. Consider having them go to a museum, zoo, park, ice skating, bowling, activity centers or playground.

Remember, whatever you choose to do, call the agreed caretaker one month, then one week ahead of the agreed time for confirmation.

Find extracurricular activities
Look at your neighborhood calendar and see if there are any activities that are available from the local Y or Nature Center. See if the Cub Scouts or Girl Scouts have any extracurricular activities or the local library has a story hour.

How about an art project if your children are interested in crafts? Search the web for ideas. I-Craft at www.i-craft.com has some good craft ideas, as does Kids Domain at www.kidsdomain.com. You can also conduct an Internet search of your own for ideas through Lycos at http://dir.lycos.com/Home/Kids. You may even decide to trade time with a friend and set up a play date for the children.

Be prepared for an emergency
Make sure to give the person who is caring for the children a list of emergency numbers including the Poison Control Center which you can list in your FamilyTime address book. Make sure to send a change of clothing with the person who is with your children, in case of emergency.

If you must bring your children to work, make sure that you have books, crayons, puzzles and toys that can keep them occupied.