Summer Family Fun!
Parents, did you know that in “June and July an average of 5,000 youth smoke cigarettes for the first time? (SAMHSA) Summer is a great opportunity for parents to have activities with their families and build a relationship that creates a stronger and healthier community.
In "The Top Ten Benefits of Spending Time With Family" Dr. Todd Thatcher wrote that a benefit of spending quality time with family is that it helps lower the risk of behavioral problems. As children spend more time with their families’ the risk of behavioral issues lowers in regards to violence and substance misuse. Other health benefits that come from spending time with family include boosted self-confidence, allows kids to develop future parenting skills, reduces stress, helps children perform well academically, etc.
Keeping children and youth occupied is an important step in allowing for a fun and drug free summer. See below for some fun family activities.
Outdoor activities- Running, sports, water balloon fight, etc.
Crafts- Jewelry making, painting, origami, etc.
Game night- Board games, card games, etc.
Take photos- Family photos would be a fun activity. Whether it is a big camera or on your phone it can still be fun.
Learn a new language- There are many languages and cultures to explore. You could also do a family culture night where everyone chooses a culture. Then learn a couple of words in that language and teach it to the family.
Serve the community- Find a local food bank, animal shelter, or anywhere that interests you and your family and plan to volunteer there for a couple of hours.
Conversation cards- Betheparents.org created cards that have questions on it that sparks conversations between parents and children.
Find out what your child enjoys- Get creative! Write down on a piece of paper something they enjoy doing and then put all the ideas in a jar and pick one activity each week to do together as a family.