Summer Time, Summer Fun, Summer Growth: 7 Worthwhile Activities for Youth During Summer Vacation
There are 365 days per year. In the United States, students attend on average, 180 school days per year. Approximately 125 days are comprised of either weekends or holidays. That leaves a remaining 60 days (in most countries) for summer breaks. While summer break is a blessing for many, it can also be very difficult for parents. At BIZNOVATOR we believe that summer is a time that represents substantial opportunity for growth and development. We encourage parents and students alike to view summer as not just a period to aimlessly pass the time, but to get engaged in extra-curricular pursuits that will keep children become curious and explore the world around them.
Below are some tips for parents on worthwhile pursuits for their children during the summer months.
- Travel within your own country. Most people in the United States have never seen more than 25% of their country. If you’re old enough and confident that your parents support travelling outside of your state, create a travel plan that will allow you to learn and see different cultures and witness firsthand, the history behind the sites you’re visiting.
- Read a book (or two) throughout the Summer. Research has shown that reading levels drop when students are out of school for the summer. Not reading regularly can negatively impact the development of information processing, comprehension and vocabulary. Once parents and students understand the value of empowering oneself through knowledge capital, it becomes easier to have reading become a part of your daily routine. Find a fun book that will challenge and motivate your son or daughter to think big… and parents, try reading with your child. It makes the activity that much more fun. I guarantee you will also learn something new through this practice!
- Get Inspired, Ride a Bike! There has been an increase in bike sales over the last several years. Riding bikes has become a significant activity for individuals and families alike. Besides the fitness value, cycling is an excellent stress reliever. Research shows that those who engage consistently in fitness activities exhibit better cognitive development and better brain power. Today, we are seeing bike lanes, cycling websites, cycling tours and competitions for youth so it has never been easier to get out there and enjoy the outdoors! To learn more, read about the man who cycled 378,000 miles (from 1962 to 2010), through his book, “Home Is Elsewhere: Heinz Stucke: 50 Years Around the World by Bike.”
- Be of service to an elderly person that’s in need of your time and brilliance. There are many elderly people who are in need of companionship. As a young person you can offer them your time and attention and in many cases, they can provide you support and guidance through sharing their own life experiences. Depending on where you live, you can teach non-English speakers how to read, write and speak English. Many elderly homeowners need help in organizing their garage or basements. Quite frankly, just being a companion helps the elderly immensely.
- Volunteer at a local community charity. If you’re a high school or college student, you’re probably needing to deliver community service hours. While the hours needed to graduate are important, I’m optimistic that you’ll serve to impact others and make a difference. Every corner of the world needs your support. Look up local charities and visit their websites. If you find the one, you’re interested in, call them to set up an interview. Go with a friend or your parents. By volunteering your time and energy, you will find that you are the one who actually receives the blessing!
- If you want to be adventurous and enjoy volunteering while also traveling, visit globalworkstravel.com. There’s a lot of learning and growing during your travel experiences. You can serve while you explore. Global Works is one of many organizations you should check out. Two additional favorites are: www.serviceforpeace.org and www.bluemissions.org
- Build your skills. – – all of us have room for improvement and growth. Avoid summer learning loss, summer set back, or the summer slide. According to College of Education Professors Quinn and Polikoff at the University of Southern California, they noted several findings regarding summer loss. The authors concluded that: (1) on average, students’ achievement scores declined over summer vacation by one month’s worth of school-year learning, (2) declines were sharper for math than for reading, and (3) the extent of the loss was larger at higher grade levels. Importantly, they also concluded that income-based reading gaps grew over the summer, given that middle-class students tended to show improvement in reading skills while lower-income students tended to experience the highest loss.
If you want to combine fun, learning, and growth this summer, make sure to research the plethora of summer camps, tours, and workshops available for youth and for adults. If you are interested in our programs, please visit www.biznovator.com for more information on how we empower youth around the world.
BIZNOVATOR is a youth empowerment platform that offers a year-round experience for young people interested in entrepreneurship, social innovation, and global leadership. Through our seminars, workshops, summer camps and in school Academies, BIZNOVATOR helps young people to DISCOVER their purpose, TRANSFORM their mindset and CONNECT to their future. We invite you to visit our website to learn more about our programs – www.biznovator.com
Juan Pablo Casimiro is Founder and CEO of BIZNOVATOR. With more than 30 years of empowering youth and adults globally, Casimiro never misses a moment to teach, coach and challenge his clients to live their dreams. Casimiro was born in the Dominican Republic, grew up in New York City, and resides in Miami, FL