Monday, 16 July 2012

Sorting Summer...

We’ve only experienced the extended ‘Summer Holidays’ once before, but then, Mini was calmer, quieter, more easily entertained, and a 4 year old pre-schooler. He finished nursery, and then came six weeks of seaside fun, garden playtime, painting, drawing, crafts and activities whilst he (and I!) looked forward to school starting. I did plan the 6 weeks to an extent as a loose guide for me, with lots of activities, and at least 1 ‘rest day’ each week (movie afternoon, quiet time).

Now, he’s an aggressive, easily bored yet easily over-stimulated 5 year old school boy, with an attitude. A new pack of crayons and a colouring book just ain’t gonna cut it.

This time I’m planning to the extreme. If I don’t plan, then I WILL lose the plot. This way I’m hoping to avoid those ‘I’m bored’ whines, and maybe I’ll even win some kind of in-house supermum award for providing varied and interesting play opportunities *grasps at the slim chance*. There is something for every day, but they are easily changed or cancelled if something else comes along. Visits to friends and family are still kept to a minimum, but a few are planned already, and I’m sure more will come up. And there are a few new DVDs and the Sky Store for quiet days.

I’ve been following ‘Lessons from an Infertile SocialWorker’ for some time, and recently I read that Becky had come up with a brilliant idea for keeping her son occupied through the school holidays – activity packets. Each pack contains all that is needed for science experiments, craft activities, make or bake sessions – all sorts.
So, I’ve pinched borrowed her idea, and come up with my own activity packs -  some are my own ideas, some are activities I’ve found online (mostly on Pinterest), and some are from some great science books that the NC had as a child, which we now have for our children.

Each pack is in a bag or box of its own, with instructions and ingredients, materials and equipment. Some have photos (because I’m testing some of the experiments first) which will hopefully encourage Mini and get him excited about doing them. Quite a few of the activities are complicated which will require help from me (good to get us working together!), but there are many that Mini can do by himself with close supervision. And there’s a good mixture of quick activities that only take 10minutes, some that are upto an hour, and a couple over the holidays that take a short time to prepare, but need a few days to work. Oh, and we’ve done some of these things before, and I know Mini enjoyed them, so I’m including them again. I’ve tried to plan stuff that I know Mini will be able to do, to save frustration on his part.

Do I sound like a control freak? Yes, probably. Am I going to attempt to stay sane? Yes, absolutely!

I’m sure that rain will stop play on occasion, I’m sure that Mini will still have meltdowns and tantrums. But I will be more chilled if I feel vaguely like I’m in control. And if I’m chilled, then perhaps some of that will rub off on Mini and Dollop. Here’s hoping…

At some point I might get around to sharing some of the activities on the Resources page of The Boy’s Behaviour, but you can always follow me on Pinterest (just drop me an email if you want an invite) to see what sort of things we’ll be getting up to…


  1. Wow, way to go you! Positivity all the way! I remember when I was a child and when G was younger we used to do a holiday scrap book for wherever we had been, picking up leaflets, post cards, sensory stuff (feathers,leaves shells etc) cutting and sticking. It used to make me excited about returning to school to share my scrap book. Just an extra idea which you almost certainly don't need because you have clear been very creative and busy. I will enjoy following your activities and experiments over the coming weeks! Definitely Gold star good mummy award for you! x

  2. Great post, you can't be too organised. last year was a nightmare for us and I am not as organised as I should be. need to get myself sorted this week. look forward to hearing how the activities go down.

  3. Great post, you can never be too organised. last year was a nightmare for us and I am not as organised as I should be yet this year. better get on with it. looking forward to hearing how the activities go down.

  4. Great - I don't see that as controlling, just being prepared!
    Like Mrs VC we used to make summer scrap books.
    For now, I am saving some of Bonzo's birthday presents, to make/break/watch/play and then, if you could send me a Pinterest invite please, I may steal some more ideas!

  5. Your doing it all right yet again Stix .full marks yet again xxx