How to Keep Your Tween Busy During Summer

Raise your hand if you are ready for May to be done. If you are like me, your May was filled with many end-of-school-year events, graduation parties, sports events, award banquets, and so on, and so on….

In the midst of my crazy schedule, I realized I didn’t have a full plan on how to keep kids busy over the summer. I had two weeks booked with vacation and an overnight scout camp. But what would I do with the other six weeks of summer break? I wasn’t about to have them become zombies by playing video games all day.

When your child is 16 years old, they can get a job. My oldest son will be working in retail over the summer. It’s not that easy when you have a child who is between 12 – 15 years old. They are too old for many of the day camps but too young to get a job.

So what do you do? What options are out there for your tween? There began my quest in finding options that I will share with you:

Day Camps – Many local universities have day camps for the 12 – 15 year olds. One of our universities has a variety of camps.  Topics include drone programming, cooking, comic book art, robotics, improv, and even Pinterest crafting. Who knew? These programs are great, but they can be very costly. Ours is $300 for a week. I would maybe consider one week for this but not multiple weeks.

Camp Counselor – It turns out that many of the local day camps will bring on junior counselors, typically starting at age 12. They do not get paid for their time like the other counselors, but it can give them some leadership experience and practice in work ethic. When they are old enough, they most likely will be hired as a paid counselor. Volunteer – There are different volunteer opportunities for tweens. Our local animal shelter is always wanting help. They could also volunteer at a food bank, nursing home, or your library. I found a couple of sites to search volunteer opportunities: Kids That Do Good and Youth Volunteer Corps.

Entrepreneurship – If your tween is eager to earn some money, they could start their own business. They could offer to wash cars, dog walk, tutor younger kids, babysit, or pet sitting. I am going to pay my child to help me create and edit videos over the summer.

The important thing is to keep our kids out of the video game zombie zone. Plus, by providing them with different experiences, they can explore their interests for potential careers.

What ideas do you have for keeping a tween busy over the summer?  We will share your ideas with others on our FB page.