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Things To Do This Summer with Your Kids: Activities & Resources to Get Through the Long Days of Summer

Hey there, parents! Get ready for a fantastic summer ahead! It’s time for the kids to dive into a few months of unadulterated excitement. While it may feel like a lot to handle, we’re here to support you with incredible family activities, advice on setting boundaries, and self-care tips. With careful planning and a dash of flexibility, you can transform this summer into a season of unforgettable memories. So, grab your sunscreen and water guns because it’s time to welcome the sunny days ahead!

We’ve put together a list to help you discover things to do in New York with kids during these long summer months. Advance to GO → 

Spend Time at Your Local Parks, Playgrounds, Waterfronts, and Beaches

Explore and embrace the beauty of New York! Enjoy a refreshing day of swimming at one of New York’s public pools or beaches, or consider renting kayaks, canoes, or paddleboats for an exciting water adventure along NYC’s waterways. These water activities offer a refreshing and enjoyable way to stay active and relax during the summer.

These locations provide a variety of amenities, such as playgrounds, sports fields, and scenic hiking trails, creating perfect opportunities for a day of leisure and fun. Discovering the natural wonders of the Staten Island Greenbelt or experiencing the innovative playgrounds in Brooklyn can provide fantastic opportunities for children to play, run, climb, and freely engage in open spaces. Central Park, with its expansive lawns and numerous attractions, is another iconic spot where families can enjoy picnics, bike rides, and more. When looking for things to do in New York with kids, these spots offer endless possibilities for enjoyment and exploration.

Discover Kid-Friendly Museums

When the weather makes outdoor activities challenging, consider visiting museums like the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, the Museum of the Moving Image, or the Liberty Science Center. These interactive and captivating spaces offer a great escape from the heat, and many museums provide free or discounted admission for children, making it an affordable and enriching option.

Museums are a fantastic way to ignite children’s creativity and curiosity about the world. Kids can explore hands-on exhibits at the Children’s Museum of Manhattan that combine fun and learning. The Museum of the Moving Image offers a behind-the-scenes look at film, television, and digital media, while the Liberty Science Center features exciting science exhibits and live demonstrations. When searching for things to do in New York with kids, these museums can spark new interests and inspire a love for learning in a fun and engaging environment.

Fostering Independence: Encouraging Individual Activities for Your Children

Planning family outings is a great way to build connections, but it’s also essential to encourage your children to pursue independent activities. Independent activities foster creativity, self-reliance, decision-making skills, and personal growth. These summer activities for kids are both enjoyable and developmental.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Reading: Create a summer reading list based on their interests. Set up a cozy reading nook (inside or outside) where they can escape into different worlds through books.
  • Crafting and DIY Projects: Provide supplies for arts and crafts and let children explore their creativity by painting, drawing, or building projects.
  • Backyard Adventures: Encourage outdoor play with activities like gardening, setting up a mini obstacle course, or having a scavenger hunt.
  • Educational Apps and Games: While limiting screen time is essential, many educational apps and games can provide valuable learning experiences.
  • Sports and Physical Activities: Enroll them in sports camps or encourage them to practice a sport they love, whether soccer, basketball, or gymnastics.
  • Music and Performing Arts: If they are interested in music or performing, consider lessons in an instrument, dance, or acting. These activities can help build their confidence and expressive abilities.

Combining Family and Independent Time

Consider a daily or weekly schedule that includes family activities and independent time to strike the perfect balance. Planning family and independent activities provides a well-rounded experience supporting children’s growth and development while fostering strong family bonds. This balanced approach helps children thrive during the summer and prepares them to transition back into the structured routines of the school year.

Opportunities and Summer Activities for Teens

As summer break nears, numerous opportunities await teenagers looking to earn extra income, acquire valuable work experience, and participate in meaningful activities. In addition to conventional summer jobs for teens, plenty of enriching experiences are designed to align with teens’ interests and goals. These summer jobs for teens not only provide financial benefits but also help in personal development. 

Seasonal Work and Community Involvement

During the bustling summer months, numerous businesses need additional assistance. Retail stores, restaurants, amusement parks, and recreational facilities often seek seasonal staff. Despite the temporary nature of these positions, they provide teenagers with valuable customer service and job experience. Some roles even offer competitive pay, particularly those involving tips, such as serving tables. Beyond potential employment options, teenagers can seize community involvement opportunities, such as volunteering at local organizations, participating in environmental clean-up efforts, or contributing to community events. These experiences foster personal growth and instill a sense of responsibility and civic engagement.

Enrichment Programs and Skill-Building Workshops

During the summer, teenagers can explore enrichment programs and skill-building workshops aligned with their interests and career goals. These programs, often offered by community centers, libraries, and educational institutions, cover various topics such as coding, photography, creative writing, and entrepreneurship. These activities can provide teenagers with valuable opportunities to develop new skills, gain insight into potential career paths, and expand their horizons.

Internships and Career Exploration

Internships are valuable opportunities for young people to gain insight into potential career paths and build practical skills through real-world experience in a specific industry. Many companies and organizations offer summer internship programs for high school students in healthcare, technology, finance, and the arts. Interns can work alongside professionals, explore different career options, and gain hands-on experience to help them make informed decisions about their future education and careers.

Cultural and Recreational Activities

Summer offers excellent opportunities for teenagers to engage in cultural and recreational activities in their community. They can enjoy concerts, theater productions, art exhibitions, or film screenings, inspiring creativity and providing cultural enrichment. Additionally, teenagers can participate in recreational sports leagues, outdoor adventures, or music festivals, which can help them make new friends and stay physically active.

Promoting Healthy Habits for Kids

During the summer break, it’s vital to help your kids establish healthy routines, prioritize safety, and balance their screen time. While it may be tempting to let them use devices without limits, setting boundaries and encouraging physical activity is essential for their overall health and cultivating positive habits. One key aspect to focus on is effectively limiting screen time for kids.

Limit Screen Time

Incorporating healthy boundaries for using electronic devices, such as phones, tablets, computers, and TVs, is crucial, especially during pleasant weather. Consider framing screen time as a reward for completing chores or participating in outdoor activities. Limiting screen time for kids is essential to ensuring they have a balanced routine that includes physical activity and social interactions.

Continue with Their Regular Wake-up Time

Establishing a consistent wake-up time, even on weekends and holidays, is crucial for regulating the body’s internal clock and can significantly aid in transitioning back to the school routine. Striving for a wake-up time that aligns with the one maintained during school days is highly beneficial.

Plan Outdoor Activities

Encouraging your children to participate in outdoor activities such as family bike rides, swimming, hiking, or team sports multiple times a week can have many positive effects. Not only does it contribute to their physical health, but it also boosts their mood and supports their mental well-being. Furthermore, children who spend time outdoors often enjoy better sleep and lower stress levels.

Practice Mindfulness

Incorporating mindfulness and relaxation techniques into your daily routine can significantly reduce stress and anxiety for people of all ages. Explore simple breathwork, meditation, or gentle yoga as a family activity. Establishing a regular mindfulness practice at the beginning and end of each day can benefit everyone.

As we prepare for summer, let’s consider all the beautiful ways to bond as a family and embrace the season! Through open communication, thoughtful planning, and a sense of adventure, we can ensure that everyone’s needs are met and create unforgettable memories together. From exploring the beauty of nature in our local parks to immersing ourselves in the vibrant cultural scene of New York City, families have countless opportunities to make lasting memories and grow closer through shared experiences. 

The key to a fantastic summer experience is balancing structured activities and free-spirited play, personal growth and relaxation, pursuing individual interests, and spending quality time with loved ones. 

If you or your kids need extra support this summer, remember that Suffolk DBT is here to help. At Suffolk DBT, we provide valuable assistance and guidance for individuals and families facing various challenges, offering a supportive environment for personal growth and well-being. Let’s make this summer a time of shared joy, personal development, and cherished memories, filled with enriching summer activities for kids.

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