Tips for Keeping Kids Sharp over the Summer

Add ImageWe all need a break every now and again — to remove ourselves from our demanding schedules and give our bodies and minds a much needed break. Children are no exception. Summer vacation can provide a unique opportunity for kids of all ages to break from rigid school-year routines and reconnect with their friends and families for some much-deserved fun. But just because school is no longer in session in the summer doesn't mean learning has to stop. Here are seven fun and unique ways you can ensure your children continue to advance their learning and stay fresh for the upcoming school year:

Visit the library. Many libraries offer fun and free summer programs and activities for children. Check with your    local library to learn more.

Read together. Research has shown that kids are most successful when their families are actively involved in their learning. One way to encourage that is to read with your child every day. If you have older children, consider starting a family book club where each member of your family reads the same book and shares their feedback and thoughts.

Check into summer camps. If your child does better with structure, you may want to consider sending them to camp. Many camps offer fun and educational activities.

Check out learning apps. You can leverage the power of technology to access fun and interactive learning apps to help ensure your child's math and reading skills.

Encourage entrepreneurship. If your children want to make some extra money, encourage them to start a business, such as a lemonade stand or lawn mowing business. Help them determine how much to charge and how to manage their money.

Play games. Family game night isn't just fun; it can be an educational experience as well. Word games or card games can help your children stay sharp. Consider doing a daily crossword puzzle with your child.

Have a word of the day. You can stimulate vocabulary by instituting a word of the day in your household. Encourage family members to use the word as many times as they can in context.

Partaking in these simple activities won't just keep your child's mind sharp this summer; it will help your family stay connected.