Teens and cellphones are kind of like peanut butter and jelly. You almost can’t have one without the other. If this sounds familiar, check out these four great ways to encourage your teen to put down their phone and engage with the world around them this summer.
Send Them to Summer Camp
It may sound silly, but summer camp is a great way for teens to spend time around their peers in a fun and oftentimes productive way. Before you get ideas of log cabins and canoes, you should realize that summer camps have come a long way. Themed camps and resort-style amenities are getting more common. Find a summer camp that matches your child’s personality and hobbies. Where athletic kids might appreciate attending youth sports camps to help them develop their skills or an expedition training camp to build their endurance, your music-obsessed teen might prefer to attend a School of Rock camp.
Work in a Garden
While gardening is hard work, it is also a great way to keep kids occupied and off their phones. Plus, there are so many worthwhile things to learn in the garden. Kids that are disconnected from the food chain often don’t even realize that the fruits and vegetables they eat come from the ground. Plus, teens can use their garden as a way to give back to their communities by donating their harvest to local food pantries or soup kitchens.
Take Some Dogs for a Walk
Teenage years are when kids learn to be adults, so a little responsibility can be a good thing. Walking dogs is not only fun but it’s also a great way for your teen to make some extra money this summer. So, if they aren’t quite ready for a traditional job, or if the thought of a fast-food window has them in tears, talk to your teen about starting a dog walking or pet sitting business. Lots of people travel in the summer, so it can be a good time to ask around among your friends and neighbors, who will probably appreciate having someone they already know taking care of their pets this summer.
Give Them a Hammock
Seriously, the summer is a time to relax. If they can’t learn to appreciate downtime as a teenager, they may never master the skill. Give your teen permission to take a break from their hectic school year schedule and recharge. Remind them that the library has a great selection of books they might want to check out and make sure you hang the hammock out of range from the Wi-Fi signal.