School-aged children are now out for the summer.

School-aged children are now out for the summer. Children today have a wide range of opportunities available to them during these summer months.
Selection and scheduling of these activities can actually become a hassle for families. Some parents tend to plan every week with scheduled activities for their children. There are many opportunities in the community that provide educational, social, and physical activities for summertime enrichment. There are so many offerings that no child can participate in all of them.
Planning these summer schedules can actually be an opportunity for children to learn decision-making skills. Talk with your child about what they are interested in doing or learning more about.
The parents role can be in learning what opportunities are available in the community and the cost, schedules, and age requirements for these activities. Then visit with your child to see which ones they are interested in. Help the child to select one or more activities that fits the family budget and schedule and that matches their interests.
Most children look forward to some camp experience, but some children may be nervous or scared of this experience. Young children may benefit from attending a day camp before they are ready for a camp experience away from home.
Help your child to realize that they can not do it all. Guide them in making selections for part of their summer experiences.
Not all time has to be organized into scheduled activities. Children may want some time to just be kids - to play in the backyard, to go fishing, to explore and enjoy nature.
Families need some time to just hang out and enjoy summertime together and that time need not be in the form of an expensive vacation. There are many fun and inexpensive places to go and sites to see close to home.
Family traditions and rituals are what form family bonds. Some of the most treasured summertime memories are the simplest. Often just the time spent together more than the activity itself is what creates the most lasting memory.
Make mealtime one of those memories. Family picnics or cookouts can be enjoyed throughout the summer even if they are right in your backyard. Plan a family picnic or have a neighborhood barbecue. Involve children in helping to plan the menu and prepare some of the food. Cooking together can provide many learning experiences and time for family bonding.
Even routine chores can become family time together. Set up a schedule of chores for the summer and rotate them weekly. Look at chores that can be turned into a family fun activity. For example, the whole family could put on their swimming suits and wash the family vehicles. That is almost guaranteed to turn into a good old-fashioned water fight.
Gardening can be another family activity, even if you only have a small area or you need to do container gardening.
Take time this summer to build in family fun time as you plan for summer activities. You never know when you may be making family memories!

Extension youth sewing camp
One of the summer opportunities offered by the  Crawford County Extension office is the annual Sewing Camp for youth ages 10 - 14. This week long activity is offered this year June 8th through 12th from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. for first time participants. Second year participants in the program may attend from 1:00 to 4 p.m.
Registration of $10.00 is due by June 1st. There are only a few spaces left, so registrations must be made soon. This is a basic skills level class so no prior experience is necessary.
Goals of the class are to learn a new skill, have fun, make new friends, and learn to do for others. The youth will construct an time for themselves and a community service project as well.
This opportunity is held at the Crawford County Extension located at 120 E. Buffalo in Girard. Call the Extension office at 620-724-8233 to enroll or for additional information.