Thursday, April 10, 2008

End of Break Project

My daughter will be on her Spring break this coming week, and as much as we would love to, between work schedules and tight budgets, we will not be taking a vacation. Now, just because we are not taking a trip does not mean that we will be sitting around like lumps not doing anything all week! So far, we are planning to take the kids to a hockey game this weekend (last of the season for our city's pro team - we're a big hockey family...), next weekend we are planning to take the kids to The Strong Museum (can't miss the last week of "Grossology!" - my daughter - and husband - would be devastated!), and if it's nice we can squeeze in a trip to the zoo. Of course, that doesn't include art projects, playing outside, and getting to spend time with Nana & Grandpa.

Sounds like a nice, fun, busy week, right? Here's the thing though -- if your children are like my daughter, when the week is over and she's back at school hearing about her friends' trips, she won't remember ANY of the fun things we did together! I found that to be the case last summer as we were getting down to the weekend before school started. Last summer we did not take a trip to Long Island or to New Hampshire to visit family as we have in the past. However, my girl took sailing lessons, swimming lessons, went to the museums and the zoo, had her first dance recital, had play dates with friends, and had lots of out of town relatives come for visits. I can remember my husband being at work that weekend, and my girl was moping around the house feeling sad that "we didn't do anything this summer!" WHAT? Kids have short-term memory about certain things, and other things they will remember forever (the embarrassing things that you want them to forget)!

So, anticipating that on the first day of school they would probably all talk about what they did on their summer vacation, I came up with a project to help jog her memory. I got her a big piece of poster board, and I gave her old magazines (GREAT to save someplace in the house for rainy day projects), markers, glue sticks, and her safety scissors and we sat at the table and made a collage of what she had done on her summer vacation. We looked through the magazines and she cut out pictures and words that described all of the things that she had done over the summer. By the time we were finished, she couldn't believe how much great stuff we had done -- she hadn't thought about it all until we put it down on paper.

It was a lot of fun - my girl loves art projects - and it helped her to remember what a great summer she had had, and she was all ready when she went back to school and she was able to talk about all of the fun things she did. This was such a fun, simple activity to do -- we'll definitely work it into our plans for her Spring break!


Anonymous said...

Hi! Your idea was great to remember what your girl did while her vacation. I will try the project next long vacation.
By the way, thanks a lot for suggestion about children's book!!
Then I found a 'STEP INTO READING' book in our shelf!! But this one is Step 2 (the title is Big Bird Says...). Few years ago, I bought it for my older son and I read it for him. I will get Step 1 books for my younger son soon. He finished a fonics workbook but he doesn't understand about it completely.

I'm Japanese so my English is very poor, I think. But you are very kind to reply my comment. I was very glad. Thank you again! Miho

Christine said...

That is such a really great idea! I love it!

Deanna said...

I'm glad you liked the idea -- it worked out well for me, and most kids love scissors, glue sticks and cutting up magazines, so I'd imagine it would be popular with others too!

I think that your English is really great, actually -- certainly better than my French which I took for 4 years in school! Feel free to check in any time!