How to give your kids an awesome summer

You can almost feel it in the air-well, not really, given the current unpredictability of climate change-summer is fast approaching. Kids are gearing up for their final exams. School bags are getting nonchalantly tossed around like pizza dough, with hopes of being replaced with new ones for next school year. Swimsuits are slowly seeing the light of day after being stashed away for ages. In between chants of “No more classes, no more books, no more teachers’ dirty looks!”, we parents try our hardest to contain that excitement and redirect that energy into something more productive, and less destructive. Out there is a wide range of summer activities for kids to choose from, so we shouldn’t pull out our hairs just yet:

1. MILO Best- tried and tested, this summer sports clinic has been around since time immemorial. Some of our popular local basketball stars (and not-so-popular neighborhood hunks) have emerged from this program. Their summer sports clinic offers a varied selection of activities, ranging from basketball to martial arts.
2. Cooking- perfect for the budding young chef. With a spatula in hand, our little one will surely have fun whipping up yummy desserts in no time.
3. Dance- develop grace, rhythm and form in your kid as he or she learns basic or advanced steps in ballet, hip-hop, etc.
4. Swimming- Bert Lozada is at the forefront when it comes to swimming lessons here in the Philippines. Visit his site for more info.

Get your child immersed in the arts, or in sports this summer. He or she will surely blossom into a more multi-faceted individual. And that, in turn, will make us proud parents.

TV shows for kids to watch

Newsflash: An asteroid just hit the earth and selectively wiped out Barney and his friends from the face of this planet. Well, that’s wishful thinking for me. Nothing used to annoy me more than seeing that purple dinosaur singing while shaking his belly on TV. Watching him just ruined my day. So, I was only too happy when my daughter finally had enough of him, and dropped him altogether, cold turkey.

Now, my daughter has moved on to, I must say, more sensible and at the same time, entertaining TV shows which especially cater to kids. Here’s a brief rundown of these shows which I would like to recommend:

Word World– it’s a 3D animated show which promotes literacy in preschoolers. Animal characters’ (aptly named Sheep for the sheep, and Duck for the duck) body parts are comprised of letters spelling their name. Example, Duck’s body is D-U-C-K put together. The fun part comes when they “build a word”. They put together their stock of letters (usually just lying around) to form everyday objects. My daughter enjoys this show, and her reading skills continue to improve with watching this.

Timmy Time– it’s the “little lamb with a lot to learn”. Also in 3D animation, this is about a lamb, Timmy, who goes about his day in preschool with his other animal friends. Here, kids learn essential values such as friendship and sportsmanship. Even for an adult like me, I find this show funny.

Angelina Ballerina– “the little mouse with big dreams”, as she is known for. Angelina is a positive role model who uses her talents to help others. This mouse in a tutu has greatly influenced my daughter’s love for dancing. I’m pretty amused at this show myself.

Mickey Mouse Clubhouse– you can never go wrong with singing M-i-c-k-e-y M-o-u-s-e. He just never goes out of style. This program teaches problem-solving and early numeracy skills to preschoolers. Moreover, the show directly interacts with its viewers.

Instead of us parents going about our chores while we plop our kids in front of the television, we can use TV viewing as an opportunity to channel (pun intended!) our energies into spending quality time with them.