Sunday, April 23, 2017

Kids Bored at Home? Find Kid-Friendly Events in Your Community

It’s amazing how kids can claim they are bored when they have a room full of toys. And there’s often a backyard that looks like a playground. However, kids crave new experiences. They fulfill the need for exploration and socialization. That is why it is always important to have a running list of activities for the “bored” kids in your life. Create a fun-packed calendar by looking for activities happening right there in your own community.

Search Your Community’s Website

Today most communities have websites. And a calendar of events is usually just a few clicks away. Head to your city or neighborhood website. You will likely find seasonal events that are free for your community such as a party celebrating a new park opening. From volunteer opportunities to school festivals and holiday parades, you can always find something happening around town that will help keep your kids busy.

Check Out What’s Happening at Day Camp

There is never a dull moment at summer day camp. Attending one of the many camp events available lets you meet your child’s best friends and their parents. The casual atmosphere at day camp makes it easy to mingle with your neighbors. Themed events that encourage dressing like a superhero or taking a step back into the days of the wild west make it easy to get your kids excited about enjoying some family time. The best part is that you will have fun at these events since there are always other parents to talk to as your kids run and play.

Expose Your Kids to The Local Arts and Culture

Throughout the year, community cultural centers offer special events to encourage kids to learn more about art and science. For example, your library may host a summer reading club. Or the local art museum may plan craft activities for kids on certain days. Zoos, planetariums and science museums are a few more fun places to check out. Some communities also host street festivals. They highlight local artists and musicians. And the low-key atmosphere is a great place to introduce kids to culture without disrupting others.

Create Your Own Community Event

When all else fails, you can always host an event on your own. Just invite your kids and their friends to do one of their favorite activities. Consider hosting a birthday party at day camp. All the neighborhood kids can play laser tag or hop on bumper boats. Alternatively, you could take your kid’s team to a ropes course so that they can strengthen their confidence and cultivate better teamwork skills.

Having a few boredom busters in your parenting tool kit is an absolute must. And your kids benefit from getting out in the world. They can learn new concepts and skills to help them reach their full potential. With vacation break just around the corner, now is the time to start planning for exciting, wholesome activities that will satisfy your kid’s need for constant stimulation.

Let your kids enjoy day camp fun at Maplewood Summer Day Camp. Experienced staff will keep your child both safe and busy with arts and crafts, games, water sports, gymnastics and more. Visit the site at  to see the fun your child will have at Maplewood Summer Day Camp.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Can Chess Help Kids Make Better Decisions in Life?

Teaching kids how to make better decisions in life is a goal of every parent. Yet it often seems to be one of the hardest skills to teach. 

Giving kids safe risks combined with the right type of guidance is a delicate balance. It requires setting up the right circumstances. 

When parents discuss finding ways to encourage better decision-making in their children, the game of chess often comes up. 

This is because playing chess promotes the development of these skills by addressing the following areas that impact the choices a kid makes in life.

Develop the Mindset That Luck is Not Everything

Kids are naturally drawn to magical thinking. Parents often hear them exclaim how someone was “lucky” when they pulled off a major achievement. 

While there is an element of luck in many games, chess is not among them. Playing chess demands strategic thinking to place oneself in a position of advantage. As your son or daughter learns to play chess, they also gain an appreciation of the potential to control their own destiny through common sense. Working with their coach and other chess players also lets kids discover that strategic thinking is something that is learned. It is not just something that lucky people are born with in life.

Learn to Identify Positive Choices

Chess lessons often focus on helping kids recognize which strategies will help to improve their positions. True even when they are faced with two undesirable or equal moves. This concept can also be applied to life. 

Kids learn how to weigh their options when faced with two choices that carry the same weight. For example, a child may wish to attend their friend’s birthday party that happens at the same time as their sports practice. Both options may appear equal on the surface. Applying what they have learned in chess encourages your child to consider which choice will take them closer to reaching their goals.

Hone Critical Analytical Skills

Critical thinking requires kids to take what they have seen work in the past and combine it with present circumstances to determine probable outcomes. Chess lessons at summer camp give them a chance to observe the time-tested strategies used by both professional and beginner players. 

Then, they get to test out their theories on new strategies they think will work. Since there is always another chance to play a new game, kids are more willing to take risks that strengthen their deductive reasoning. When faced with tough decisions outside of the chess arena, they can apply these same analytical skills with greater confidence that they are making the right decisions.

Learning to play chess changes kids. Parents find that attending lessons pays off in more than just academic benefits. From strengthening their self-confidence to teaching them how to effectively analyze a situation, chess lessons address all the areas a kid needs to be able to make better life decisions.  

To maximize this effect, as your son or daughter makes choices that affect his or her life, simply stay involved in their lessons. Help them find ways to implement the skills they are learning.

Let your kids enjoy chess games at Maplewood Summer Day Camp. Experienced staff will keep your child both safe and busy with arts and crafts, games, water sports, gymnastics and more. Visit the site at  to see the fun your child will have at Maplewood Summer Day Camp.