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When spring break rolls around each year, as parents we are often faced with a dilemma, unless we already have plans in place.
We're at home with the kids all week and they have run out of activities to do.
Of course, there are only so many board games you can play.
But we've come up with some great activities that the kids can do while they are on spring vacation while teaching them to be mindful and to boost their mental wellbeing.
We can help grow our child's minds just by helping them do simple things. But from those simple things, they learn big lessons.
There is nothing quite like creating your own piece of art.
Something tangible that they can hold in their hands and be able to say "I made this," is a great way to not only get them involved in something to open their minds up, but can help them express themselves through their art.
This alone can help them improve their overall mental wellbeing.
Give them different media options to work with, and see which one that they like the best.
You can try out painting, coloring, sculpting, or even just doing a craft you found on Pinterest can work, especially with little ones.
Not to mention that their eyes will not be glued to the screen of their phone or video game system.
At the end, they have something that they can happily and proudly display in their room.
It does not have to be Thanksgiving to learn all about gratitude and what it is about.
You and your kids can create a gratitude jar easily.
All you need is a jar, some paint, and paper.
But it is all about thinking about the positive things in our lives, rather than focusing on the negative emotions.
The kids can paint their own jars, to make them all their own.
Then, you can help them fill out the messages of gratitude that they want to put in it.
They can look back on it anytime that they want, of all that they are grateful for, and they can always add to it, or even make a bigger jar when the time comes.
There is a lot to be thankful for.
When you and your children volunteer, you are all not only giving back to the community, but you are teaching them important life skills.
Volunteering at a food pantry or soup kitchen are great places to start.
There are also animal shelters, churches, senior centers and more that you can contact about any volunteer opportunities.
These are great experiences for your children to learn about helping others, which is a skill that they will carry on with them into their adult lives, but it is especially good for their mental wellbeing.
Spring break is that time of year when all the flowers start popping up from their winter slumber, and of course that means beautiful greenery and flowers soon.
Then the birds come back, and it is all a wonderful experience.
One thing you can do to help your children practice mindfulness is to help them to connect with nature.
Help them look for flowers, study the trees, even look at the tiniest of insects through a microscope.
Helping them learn more about nature can also help them be mindful and present in the moment.
Alternatively, you can also start a garden with your children.
Springtime is certainly the time to do so. If you have access to a yard, you can always designate a place for a garden, dig it up - have the children help of course.
Have them help choose the flowers, fruits or vegetables that you want to grow.
They will be able to continually reap the benefits of learning about how a seed changes into a full-grown plant. They can follow it as it grows.
While this may not seem like a productive activity, it doesn't have to be.
By sitting down as a family and choosing to watch something together fosters a loving and caring environment for your children, which in turn, makes them happy.
Get your kids involved in the movie night, too.
Ask them what movie that they would like to see, and ask them about any fun kind of snacks that they would like, too.
You can make it like a real movie night in.
Your kids will enjoy the movie, but for sure treasure the memory of all of the family gathered around the television to watch something awesome.
There is a lot to be said about the power of play.
Your child not only has a lot of fun doing it, but it can help them use their imagination, too.
For example, in fantasy play, children can really create their own little worlds where they can control things.
But sometimes, even play therapy is used for children's mental wellbeing.
You never know, you could also learn about your child when you play with them.
You can learn about their behaviors, how they play, even how they feel sometimes.
That is why play is such a powerful tool.
You can play with anything, from dolls to toy robots, to tools, find something that your child likes and go with it. They will absolutely enjoy the time that you are sharing with them.
There are a variety of activities that your children can do in order to boost their mental health over spring break.
From creating something with their hands to helping out at a food pantry, there are many skills that your child can learn.
Anything that fosters a good environment for children, and can help them grow their minds can be a wonderful activity for you to do with your child and help to boost their mental wellbeing.
It's important to enjoy spring break for what it is - a break.
But if you want to shake things up and create a fun schedule of activities for them, you will find that they rather enjoy these activities that are done with you.
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Overcomers Counseling is a counseling service that helps people overcome mental health issues. They provide counseling services to children, adults, couples and families in a non-judgmental atmosphere with care and support. Overcomers Counseling provides more than just therapy sessions; they offer hope to those struggling with depression, anxiety, or addiction by offering them tools to find peace within themselves. Book a counseling session today!