Where does it end?

July 30, 2010 at 10:57 pm Leave a comment

I don’t know how many times I thought this today as I watched my son romp around the playground and trot off to the beach with my dad at Moreau Lake.

This summer has been the first time that we’ve had to find programming for Isaac because he wasn’t getting full summer educational programming. Yes, we were spoiled. BUT, it was a CPSE IEP type thing, so we knew it had to come to an end sometime.

So, this summer, we concentrated on things that I did as a kid that made summer fun. Doug didn’t do a lot of these things, because, as I tell him all of the time, he had a deprived childhood. He never went to summer camp, he never really went camping or did any of the things that I feel make a summer.

So, we took Isaac for swim lessons, sent him to park camp (awesome first camp experience by the way..) and then have now sent him to literacy camp, so that he can maintain his reading skills. Yes, literacy camp is run by the school, so it’s technically an educational experience, but it’s only 3 weeks out of our summer. Not the good ol’ 8-ish weeks we’re used to! We’ve driven places, ran around like gangbusters and today, went out to Moreau Lake State park for a day of picnicing and fun.

This leads me back to my first statement-in kind of a round about way.

As I was watching Isaac romp, I thought about all of the camps that I got advertisements for. Hockey, drama, pre high adventure, swim, “summer enrichment”, Montessori-the list goes on and on and on.

So, where does programming and overscheduling end and going to camp or having adventures just for the sake of being outside and playing start? Why do some parents feel the need to have their child’s entire summer experience pre-programmed with sports, or some other type of hardcore programming when you could just toss the kid into general program and let them experience life and having summer fun?

I don’t get it.

During the school year, the pressure to perform is so intense, even at the lowest levels. Why do kids need to spend their summer being pressured to perform at one thing or another? Have we as a society lost sight of the fact that kids do need to have space to run and be free and touch and do?

So, where does it end?

For me, it ends when school lets out. Yes, there are educational opportunities, and if we need summer reading, we do it, but for the most part-summer is free, easy and fun. Not heavily programmed and regimented with lots of pressure. There’s plenty of time for pressure when school starts back again in the fall.

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Entry filed under: insanity.

Summer o’ stuff-the K’NEX construction vehicles Now, I’m just a little bit more bionic.

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