The beautiful days of families gathering and friends cheering are near; those exciting moments where we hum cheerful tunes of Christmas carols and count our blessings. Finally, the holidays have arrived. The children are all home, eager to take their well-deserved rest from a long and tiresome school term. Parents have had a long working year too, and need as much relaxation as they can get, while of course keeping that watchful eye on the little ones. Now that they have free time on their hands, what activities can kids engage in during the school holidays to keep busy?
Indulging in reading
No, I’m not talking about the reading they’ve been doing all year in school, the kind that involves text books and assignments. I’m talking about good old literature. The reading culture has unfortunately been low and forgotten in our country. Due to all the new digital inventions and new ways to pass time such as social media, video games and television, our little ones lack the pleasurable and satisfying feeling of curling up with a good page-turner and getting absorbed and submerged into a story. This is the issue that the Storymoja festival tries to solve in our society. You may never be a world traveler in your lifetime, but through books, you can go anywhere in the world and even to mystical lands.
It’s important to buy our children plenty of story books and diverse reading material for them to explore. Reading develops a young person’s brain by keeping it active, encouraging creativity, learning new things, and understanding different perspectives by seeing them through other people’s words.
Going to camps
Getting out and about in an organized and safe environment such as a camp is a thrilling and fun experience for the kids to have. They get to meet other kids of their age and learn how to socialize while having a good time away from home. Not only does their being away from home give them a new sense of independence and responsibility, it also gives the parents a little time to do things they enjoy as well. An example of a kid’s camp in Kenya is the Rapid’s Camp Sagana which offers summer and holiday camps that train the youth in life skills as well as giving them fun activities like river trekking, bungee jumping, white water rafting and fishing.
Learning new skills
A child needs to grow up knowing themselves and understanding who they are. This can be found through paying close attention to what their interests and passions are, and allowing these to grow and develop. Finding out what the kids are inclined to, tapping into it and finding ways for them to learn it is essential. Through taking interesting and enjoyable classes such as music and art lessons, the young ones can gain some self-discovery. The new set of skills will also be quite useful in allowing them to become successful adults in future. A good music school for example, is the Kenya Conservatoire of Music.
Visiting grandparents and older relatives
As they say with age comes wisdom. As such the elderly in our society have seen and experienced so many things during their lifetimes that it is a source of education and learning in itself just to listen to their stories. The immense knowledge and wisdom they have acquired goes unparalleled with anything the kids can ever learn in school. By spending time with their grandparents, they learn and understand their culture better, know their history and get to see life from a different perspective.
Those are just a few ideas of how the kids can spend their holiday time. However, is important to remember that the time the children spend with their own parents is the most important. Youth can never lack something new to learn from their parents. It allows the parents to know and understand their children, and vice versa. Spending time together over the holiday season will keep the family close and strengthen those important bonds.