It’s once again that time of year when mothers of all classes stay home, work from home, work part-time or full time, and eagerly look for ways to keep their children busy during the long, hot summer vacation. And there’s a whole range of opportunities available today with summer camps covering everything from arts and crafts, reading and writing, science and math projects to sports and swim camps. In fact, a friend complained that the choice was so big that it was difficult for her and her daughter! However, I think it is better to have too many choices than none at all, as was the case when my son grew up in the Level II cities in North Karnataka. Although I wholeheartedly cursed the lack of opportunities at that time, it all turned out to be for the best, because it prompted me to think about how I could keep my son busy and indoors during the hottest time of the day – in some parts of Karnataka, temperatures range from 44-48 degrees in May.

Here is a list of things


Introducing my son to books was a big part of the effort to keep him busy. We usually visited Bangalore during our vacation in Dasara, and the visit inevitably included a trip to the Mecca stores and the Select bookstore to pick up books. I usually bought several books of short stories by various authors (Roald Dahl, Hardy Boys, Enid Blyton, Richmal Crompton), summaries of some classics, the horror series (Horrible Stories, Horrible Science, etc.) and a single volume of Tell Me Why/ What/ When/How – more than one was not welcome as the holiday would then seem “like school”. As I grew up, I tried to add some history books and one on learning skills, which turned out to be extremely unpopular!


Simple writing tasks based on what the child has read can be a lot of fun, especially if done with a partner. This can be difficult because children are never ready to write at the best of times. The experience included a trip to the post office to buy stamps and leave the letter in the mailbox and an explanation of how the letter got to her grandfather in Bangalore. They really appreciated her letters and responded to her by return mail! The children are very excited and excited to see a letter addressed to them in the mailbox, so much so that my son waited anxiously for the postman when he knew that a letter was needed.

A quiz

Take a quiz on a book that the child has recently read – this means that you have to read the book too! Better yet, take the opportunity to connect with your child by reading it together. As the child grows, ask him or her to write a quiz for you – this is usually a big hit because children love the opportunity to turn the table and ask hard questions to take us by surprise.

Knowledge of dictionaries

When your child starts reading, he will find many new words. Introduce the concept of looking up words in the dictionary – you’ll find some resistance here, as the easiest way out is to ask an adult. Make a pact with your child – tell him or her to look up three new words a day and you will help him or her with the rest.


I bought a DIY craft book that explained how to make paper models of cars and planes, and I dreamed of spending hot afternoons building the beautiful models shown in the book. This was not a great success, because none of us had nimble fingers, and the whole thing was more complicated than it seemed. But we had a lot of fun comparing what we had done with a picture of the real thing in the book! The Mechanix set was a huge success, and my son spent many pleasant afternoons building cars, bikes, and planes and displaying them in our showcase. His goal was to show a different model every night when his father came home from work.


Watch your old favorites with your son – looking at an old favorite through your son’s eyes can give him a new perspective and even help him discover that he has the same taste. My son and I watched The Sound of Music during his sixth-grade vacation, Golmaal (the old one with Utpal Dutt and Amol Palekar), Parichay (the Bollywood version of Sound of Music), Do Aankhen Barah Haath (V. Shantaram’s film about the rehabilitation of criminals) and Angoor (based on The Comedy of Errors). We also saw For a Few More Dollars, Party, It’s a Crazy, Crazy, Crazy World, Home Alone, and many others over the years. I even introduced my son to Doordarshan’s comedy show, Yeh Jo Hai Zindagi, which to my surprise he liked very much.


Organizing picnics with other families with young children to visit the area. Planning, shopping and preparing for the trip can not only be a learning experience but can also be a lot of fun and bring back many happy memories. Look for places in your town, perhaps a museum, park, or another place that might interest your child.

You might also try cooking simple recipes with your child and helping her learn some basic cooking skills. You could teach them the joys of gardening – planting, watering, and caring for a plant and waiting for it to flower and bear fruit can be magical for young children – but be sure to choose something that is easy to grow and has a short growing season. If your child enjoys drawing, painting, and coloring, stock up on art materials and helps her explore her capacity for self-expression in her chosen medium. Organize board games with the neighborhood children so the child can mingle with his or her peers and you have a break.

Summer camps introduce children to a variety of activities and help them discover their interests and abilities. For most children living in urban/metropolitan areas, summer camps are now a matter of routine. However, if you don’t have access to such camps, talk to your child, and think about activities to keep them busy during the holidays. Let your child choose what he or she wants to do to get interested. And, most importantly, keep them relaxed and entertained… and you will create an unforgettable vacation that your child will remember with pleasure for years to come!

Hello aPasos friends, today we show how to make a gift with #padlock and #key to open it. In this #Treasure Chest you can place inside an amazing #gift, chocolates, pictures, a love letter…. it is perfect to you give to a special person. The Treasure chest, padlock, and key are made from recycled cardboard.

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