The summer vacations are around the corner and as parents you are already distraught and worried! How are you going to keep the little busy-bodies meaningfully engaged? You’ve tried every trick in the book and yet not succeeded in overcoming their ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder)!

Here are 6 offbeat ideas to pique their interest and fire up their curiosity to learn more.

  1. Baking – Kid love to potter around the kitchen. Harness their eagerness to create something new and enroll them for a bakery class. Or just home-school them the old-fashioned way. It could be a great chance to bond with your child and teach him essential lessons about nutrition, hygiene and even ratio & proportion. You could organize a small get together at the end of the course to show off his newly found culinary skills. That is, if he hasn’t finished the last crumbs himself!
  2. Gardening – Often a life spent in the city deprives one of the simple pleasures offered by living a life close to nature. Encouraging your child to pursue gardening can retrieve some of the lost experiences. You are lucky if you have access to at least a small sunny patch. Or else there is a lot that you can do with a sunny balcony too. All one needs is several pots, saplings, spade and other tools, a watering can and you can get started! Young children are exposed to the healthy outdoors and can appreciate the miracles that appear when consistent, disciplined effort is put in to a job.
  3. Photography – Gone are the days when photographs had to be printed to be viewed. Technology has enabled us to capture and view photographs instantly. Arm your child with a DSLR Camera and let him spend time with a screen of a different kind this time. One that will help her appreciate the beauty that surrounds us. You will find a plenty of good free lessons on YouTube to get started.
  4. Online Language Course – Did you know that some experts believe that learning a new language generates growth of more nerve endings in the brain and can give a fillip to the brain development as a whole? Take advantage of all the time that the child has on hand and sign him up for an online language course. Languages like German, Mandarin Chinese, Spanish are widely used and considered useful in the corporate world as well.
  5. Creative Writing – Contrary to what most people think any child can be encouraged to pursue creative writing to a varying degree. The first step would be to inculcate a strong habit of reading in the child. ‘Kindle’ the reading tablet is a great place to start. Most kids are technology savvy and love to tinker with tablets and gadgets. Give them a healthy alternative this time!Once they are addicted to reading, creative writing is a natural progression with a little bit of a nudge. Some children blossom under the guidance of an able teacher. Others might be more willing to play game if the writing part is intertwined in an app. That makes writing apps available on Kindle a great option. MetaMoji Note is but one example.
  6. Playing Board Games – Today the X-box and the mobile games are replacing the good old board games. Games afford children the opportunity to learn inter-personal skills, competitiveness, team building skills, strategizing and much more. Invite your children’s friends for a game of Taboo, Scrabble, Rubik’s race, Pictureka, Scotland Yard, Cluedo or good old Life! You might have to play the unwitting moderator for a bit but with time children fall in love with these classics. Consider buying an engaging board game right at the beginning of the vacations. You might end up getting addicted too!

There are many such interesting alternatives available. All you need is a little creativity to encourage children to be gainfully employed!