Schools play a crucial role in supporting a child’s mental health. You can help your child’s well-being with mental health activities during the summertime. These summer activities for kids can help keep your child’s mental growth and help them manage anxiety and other conditions.
Why Do Mental Health Activities During the Summer?
Children have become accustomed to remote schooling, masks, and other changes thanks to the pandemic. As life returns to normal, some children are struggling to adjust. Integrating mental health activities into your summer routine can help prepare children with anxiety and other mental health conditions for a return to normalcy.
Mental health activities can help children who struggle with specific conditions, like anxiety, depression, or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The right children’s mental health activities can improve a child’s coping skills, confidence, social skills, and emotional awareness. In addition, if they have any anxieties about the upcoming school year, these mental health activities can help them prepare mentally for returning to school.
Best Mental Health Activities for Kids
1. Focus on Connecting Socially
Many children are accustomed to social isolation because of remote schooling. Friendships are important for a child’s development, but these friendships have deteriorated without in-person interactions. One of the best mental health activities for kids is to plan a gathering or playdate for your child, so they have a chance to renew their friendships before the school year begins.
2. Practice Makes Perfect
Once school starts, kids will have to adjust to being in class, but they don’t have to make this adjustment all at once. You can alleviate anxiety and social anxiety by preparing them for school early. For example, you can practice spending time away from each other, so separating from each other for school won’t be so difficult.
3. Prepare for New Routines
During the summer, try adopting the sleep schedule and screen-time rules your child will have during the school year. You may also want to change your exercise routines and other activities, so it is easier to adjust. If your loved one has anxiety or high-stress levels, they’ll have an easier time adjusting to new routines if you gradually ease them into the change.
4. Learn Coping Skills Beforehand
During the summer, please help your child learn positive self-talk they can use whenever they are stressed out. Rather than focusing on something difficult, they should say, “It might be hard, but it will be okay.”
Positive self-talk helps children learn how to problem solve and deal with stress. Over time, they will improve at handling problems independently without as much stress and anxiety. Other than alleviating symptoms of depression, it can also boost their overall well-being.
5. Breathing Exercises
Meditation and breathing exercises can help children activate their parasympathetic nervous system. This allows them to relax and feel calm. Plus, this is one of the mental health activities you can do from any location.
6. Write Stories
Stories and journaling are fun things to do with your child at home. Other than helping your child express their creativity, these activities can help them process difficult emotions and channel their anxieties.
7. Get Professional Help
You may run out of time during the school year to do mental health activities and counseling sessions. If your child is struggling to deal with anxiety, depression, or stress, take some time to get mental health treatment during the summer. A behavioral healthcare professional can help you determine the right treatment for your child and help them learn new coping skills before school begins.
Prepare Your Child for a Happy, Healthy School Year
If your child is struggling with anxiety, depression, or other mental health conditions, these mental health activities can help. You can also get support through child and adolescent mental health programs. Contact us today to learn more about how San Antonio Behavioral Healthcare Hospital can help.