Summer Schedule for Kids

Updated on May 06, 2013
C.K. asks from Knoxville, TN
17 answers

Hey Mommas,
What do you do with your kids over the summer? I don't mean summer camps and vacation or stuff like that. I mean when you have days and weeks at home with your kids, what do you do? Do you have any kind of semblance of a schedule? My kids are 6, 3, and 1. I want to prevent the two older ones from arguing (what they tend to do when they are together a lot) so thought I would have some kind of plan for the summer. Just looking for ideas and what you have found works for you and your kids.

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answers from Washington DC on

Lots of trips to the library
Frequent trips to the swimming pool
Gymnastics team practice 2x/week
Usually lazy mornings, we don't do anything until the afternoon

2 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

We have a neighborhood pool and go there daily, with parks in the afternoon after lunch. Also, the zoo, maybe a library summer program and beaches. For rainy days, I get a 90 day local gym membership (to cover June, July and August) which has free swim and childcare for kids, so they can stay busy. I also enroll them in a half day or summer camp for VBS one week a month. GL!

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answers from San Francisco on

I'm not much of a "schedule" person, per se, but we got out, a LOT.
Different parks, the pool/swim lessons, the library, the zoo (we had a yearly membership that cost less than $100) the beach, lots of time with friends. We rarely spent a full day at home, and if we DID it involved plenty of time outside, working in the yard, playing in the sprinklers, riding trikes, etc..
If I needed to go to Target or something I usually included lunch at a play place (like McDonalds) just to make it a little more "fun." Though honestly I saved as many shopping and other tedious errands for the evenings or weekends as I could, so I could leave the kids with daddy.
In general if you get up, have breakfast, pack lunches and GO somewhere from like 10 am to 1 pm or so, your kids will be wiped out.
That means down time in the afternoon, naps for the little one/s and quiet time for the rest of you.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

No, not at all. I let the kids do it as total down time. We do a lot of stuff throughout the summer so if they have a day where we don't have to be anywhere it's one to cherish.

My granddaughter would go to bed every day by 8pm and still be asleep at noon the next day. She's a total sleeper.

My grandson is up with the birds each and every day. Since he has "issues" we have to have one of use with him at almost every moment. Last week I was doing some work on the computer and hubby was watching the kiddo's. He fell asleep so the kids proceeded to toss a dozen eggs at each other and finger paint in cookie dough on the walls......I was so furious! Times like that I want to ship them off to boarding school.

But we do a lot every day year round. Busy kids don't have time for drugs, discovering sex, alcohol, etc.....

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

We just went one day at a time!!!! No schedules. It is heaven on earth!!

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I have teenager and a 6 y/o, both of them signed up for camps. 15 y/o is going on the college search trip for a week, we will drive and visit grandma along the way, then he is off to a wilderness camp, then he is back but will be learning the ropes at the local camp to work with kids. My 6 y/o is in full time local camp M-F for 2 months, on the weekends we will do sports, pool, crafts, play-dates, reading, library visits, exploring nature, things like that. I plan every summer way in advance! Structured life helps me to plan my time and activities as well instead of being at mercy of kids' desires. Hope that helps.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Detroit on

I am not working this summer so I will be home with 6 and 7 year olds.. all day..

I have them signed up for 2 vacation bible schools. (mon-fri 9-12)-- not sure they will go everyday.. but probably 3 or 4 days of the week.

we will go on vacation 1 week. granma will visit for a week..

so there are 7 othere weeks to fill..

I plan on them doing about 30 minutes of school work in the morning. to keep them from forgetting everything... they are used to doing my homework at home so they wont protest too much.. I plan on quiet reading time every afternoon.. they can both read.. so they can read their books.. and I can read my magazines.. maybe 20-30 minutes.. when it gets hot and sticky outside..

I have gathered information on all the free or low cost fun things to do around town.. the library has activities.. the parks have fun days with a clown show.. the pool has family days that are cheap...

basically most days we will do a quick schoolwork session in the morning.. go out and do some activity.. then be home in the late afternoon read relax and watch some tv.. we will have a small inflatable backyard pool.. we have a park we can walk to..

We will go to the beach and city pool.. but those things cost money.. and you cant spend $$$ every day entertaining the kids.. so somedays we will go to the library for the library activity.. then we will head over the the park (walking distance from the library.) have a picnic and play on the swings..

I would make a list of all of the fun things to do in your area.. a list of free things and a list of things that cost money... have fun... enjoy the summer..

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

When my kids were young we went to the pool every day. Then we all had friends to hang out with.

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answers from Houston on

Lots of playground time, hiking, museum, zoo, splash park, library, arts and crafts in addition to one month summer camp!! Hope you have a great and safe summer.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Grand Forks on

We plan an outing for every day we aren't away on vacation or at camp. Outings may be the zoo, the nature center, the museum, swimming, bowling, go-carting, mini-golfing, the library, the movies, the wading pool/splash pad, the farm, the beach, various playgrounds, the YMCA etc. Our outings may just be a couple hours, or they may be all day. I usually allow the boys to bring a friend along if there are any friends in town.

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answers from Detroit on

Along with the trips to pools, parks, libraries and museums, I try to do a big project with my DD. This summer she wants to build a giant puppet. I've started to gather the materials already. I've never built one or anything else, but instilling that can-do spirit is forcing me to see what I can do!

But I know what you mean. I tend to get more accomplished with a schedule. I look at the calendar and see the days of doc appointments and the like, and then I schedule "Don't touch this day" days. Recuperation days for mommy, basically.

On a daily basis, I aim for a time that we are out of jammies, and another time we are outside (we even eat breakfast outside, as much as possible), some math and reading time, meal time, go have fun time, tidying and chore time, and the like. I aim to get the responsibilities done by ten or eleven so the rest of the day can be fun.

Can it get here soon enough?

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Phoenix on

My town has an awesome Parks and Rec department that has all sorts of fun classes for kids. My daughter and I typically do swim lessons M-Th around mid morning (this year the classes start at 11:20). We then do one class in the morning, usually dance or art related. We go home for lunch and nap and then have the afternoons and Fridays free for whatever we want.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

My kids stay home with a sitter during the summer, but they have two weeks of VBS and two weeks of swimming lessons, plus one week of vacation this summer.

When they are home they get to wake up when they want. They do have to complete their chores (not daily, but when needed). They get TV, computer, video game, toy, reading, etc time...basically whatever they want to do to chill. The sitters also bake with them, arts and crafts, riding bikes, playing in the backyard, our neighborhood park, water balloons, sprinkler, etc.

In the afternoons, we have a pass to the local base pool, so they get to go their as often as they want. It's right next door to my office which is great, because I can go with them for 30-45 minutes. I don't normally get in, but I get to have lunch with them and get some sun.

They also go out to lunch, movies, library, Jumy Yard, boardwalk, feed the ducks, etc....really just whatever they want to do and the sitter wants to do.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Summer reading programs at the library, school work every day - I had workbooks for them, swimming lessons, karate lessons, vacation bible school, play dates, pool time, parks, museums, and more.

Just plan out your calendar and see how it goes!


answers from Columbia on

Outdoor chores early in the morning while it's cool. Lawn mowing, raking, weeding, car washing, etc.

Library time.

Swimming during the heat of the day.

Play outside with friends until dark-ish (or specified time).

Dinner/family time.




answers from Wausau on

I find keeping a bedtime/morning routine that is similar to during the school year helps a lot.


answers from Washington DC on

for me (even during the homeschooling years) summer is lazy bliss-out time. nothing makes me happier than a calendar day with a big fat 0 on it.
but with kids it DOES make sense to have a plan, so long as it's flexible. especially if you got kids like my younger, who loves to have his days scheduled down to 15 minute increments. i have no clue from what planet that boy hails.
so my kids had a squishier, vaguer outline of the rest of the year. i'd give 'em a week's worth of schoolwork to do and let them decide when and how to get it done. that plus my work schedule would provide the framework, and we'd fill in the time around it 1-3 days in advance. if there were field trips or co-op activities, they'd get priority. usually we'd plan for them to go to friends' houses or have friends over here once or twice as well. but there was also plenty of unstructured lazy time. i would have expected more of that to take place in the pool or woods, but my kids were more likely to spend their downtime on video games. i know! anathema! but surprisingly enough, they're both smart, productive young adults who manage college, jobs, social lives and yes, video gaming very well.
i love summer.
:) khairete

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