Get That Lump Off Your Sofa: Ways to Help Your Teenager Succeed this Summer
Article by: Lauren Barrett
Summer is a great time to help prepare your teen for their future, whether that be flying to coup and heading to college, applying for colleges for the next year, or looking for an after school job, these hot months provide great opportunity for growth. However with constant downloading, streaming and gaming, it is getting more and more difficult to get your teens up of the couch and motivated to kick-start their future. Here are a few activities to help prevent your teen’s brain from turning to mush during their break.
If your teen is looking to improve their grades, round out their college applications, or just really loves to learn, then an academic class may be a great fit. Local schools and colleges in your area often offer summer enrichment programs, such as creative writing or language immersion. Another good option for those teens looking to round out their college application is an ACT or SAT prep course. Many high schools offer both courses, or you can find them online.
If your teen wants to help others, get them connected with a few local volunteer organizations. Local options include nursing homes, churches, animal shelters, soup kitchens, halfway houses, homeless shelters, or even doing yard-work for an elderly neighbor or family friend. Your teen may even want to get involved with a local church for a mission. Summer months are a great time for church missions, and many may even take young adults to third world countries to build homes, parks, and libraries. Volunteering will keep your teen busy, while giving them a sense of personal responsibility and gratitude. In addition to giving back, volunteer work looks great on college applications and resumes for future reference.
If your teen is trying to save a little bit of money over the summer a part time job is the best way to do that. Not only is it a constructive way to spend their free time, it will help them to develop a new confidence and independence that can only come from work experience. A part time job will help your child to strengthen their sense of responsibility while obtaining valuable work experience for their resume.
An internship is a hands on way for your teen to gain work experience in a field that they are interested in. Many teens are not aware of the different careers paths, and skills needed to be successful within that path. Most high school internships have a minimum age requirement of 16, and ask that they have completed their sophomore year of high school. You can meet with your teen’s guidance counselor to explore more internship opportunities in the BCS area.
Pairing your teen with the right summer activity can help strengthen their independence and sense of responsibility as well as increase their self-esteem. Although downtime is necessary, it is important to help your teen prepare for their future during their time off.