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Five Ways to Help Your Kid Socialize This Summer

Kids have a ton of opportunities to socialize during the school year because they see their friends and classmates almost every day. During the summer, however, many kids don’t get a chance to socialize as much as would be ideal. Some students live far away from their school or don’t get to spend time with classmates for any number of reasons. However, there are tons of ways to help your kid socialize this summer so they can learn and grow with their peers.

Summer camp
Summer camp can last all summer long or might just take up a week of a kid’s time. There are tons of options from sports camps to arts and crafts programs to academic programs that help fill a kid’s schedule while giving them a chance to socialize in a structured environment. It’s important for kids to be around other people their age and learn how to get along in a group environment, share materials, cooperate as a team, and study for assignments. Summer camp mimics the classroom environment in many ways and provides the structure many kids need in order to maintain friendships.

Community programs
If summer camp is over for the season or if organized camps are not available in a student’s area, there are some great community programs that allow young students to socialize in a more informal environment. Local organizations such as the YMCA provide safe and encouraging environments for younger students to work on sports activities and learn about healthy exercise and nutrition while their parents are at work. Many such community organizations also offer arts and crafts projects and additional extracurricular programs for students to try.

Volunteer opportunities
There are lots of opportunities for students to socialize when they volunteer. Some volunteer groups are even geared specifically towards younger kids who want to become involved in their community over the summer. In addition to socializing with students their age, young volunteers will spend time around positive adult role models other than their teachers and parents. Becoming part of a community and helping out makes kids feel great about themselves and helps boost the self-esteem in addition to improving socialization skills.

Organized sports teams
Team sports are one of the most popular choices for kids to participate in during the summer months. It’s warm outside and students can get some fresh air and exercise while learning to get along with teammates as well as the opposing team. Learning good sportsmanship is a fantastic way to socialize and grow to be a positive and contributing member of a community. These social skills help students with more challenging social situations that present themselves in both high school and college. Students also have the benefit of working with a coach who can help them with their sports skills as well as socialization.

The park or playground
Younger kids can also socialize in a less structured environment at a neighborhood park or playground. Most SoCal communities offer community parks with playground equipment and plenty of open green space to run around in. As long as students have a responsible adult watching them, kids can enjoy playing with neighborhood kids and getting to know new friends outside of the classroom. It’s important for young kids to have regular friends that they see nearly every day but it’s also essential to be able to make new friends and get along with kids of varying age groups.

Robyn Scott is a private English tutor at TutorNerds. She attended the University of California, Irvine as an undergraduate and the University of Southampton in England as a graduate student. She has worked with students from the United States, Japan, South Korea, the European Union, and Africa.

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