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Countdown to an endless summer?

Posted on June 26, 2014 by Taber Times

In the words of shock rocker Alice Cooper – “school’s out for summer,” after this week – and students and teachers across southern Alberta rejoice.

Some parents, maybe not so much.

For graduates, it’s a time to celebrate but also a time to head into the deep end of the real life pool. Graduates will spend the summer perhaps working or preparing for a post-secondary education. Other graduates may take the summer and fall off to travel and figure out what to do for the next 50 years or so.

Students not graduating will spend the summer months playing outside, camped out in front of video games, binge-watching TV, on family vacations, or at summer camps. Perhaps some families may venture out on a local jaunt to many of the area’s fabulous tourist attractions and must-sees.

Sprinklers run amok, while kids try to cool off in hot temperatures (though that doesn’t seem to be the case in the middle of June) and families head to the mountains for a weekend of camping, hiking, boating, fishing and what have you. Many kids will spend days at summer programs, while parents are at work.

Other kids will take to the parks, skate parks and most likely where they shouldn’t be going on bikes, scooters and skateboards for days of outdoor fun. Some may stay inside shouting, “I’m melting,” when out in actual daylight. Don’t worry parents, your kids are not vampires and will not disintegrate in the sun.

While it’s hard to keep kids busy an entire summer break, parents need to be pro-active with new ideas, fun activities and electronics in moderation, so kids won’t go insane and become little zombies and/or terrors around the house.

For graduates, it’s time to realize life is a highway and is a road well-travelled. Get out and see the world. Create the you…you want to be. Sip and savour all life has to offer and don’t settle. Realize what you want to do now in life will most likely change one or two times throughout your lifetime. You might want to be a teacher now, but in the future you might end up a vet or coffee shop owner.

Graduates, remember life is too short not to do the things you want to do. Don’t let work dictate your life and realize early on work is not life. Work or your career is only a part of life, it doesn’t define you. Take time to explore life’s many options and don’t be surprised with stumbling upon new things that may tickle your fancy.

Non-graduating kids will be taking the step to a new grade in the fall. This is a great accomplishment and non-graduating kids should be proud to move onto the next phase of their life. A new chapter in the book of life, so to speak.

But with excitement of a new class or new school or new teacher comes nervousness. It’s only natural to be worried or concerned about change but it will be great. Put all fear and reluctance aside and take the plunge.

If you’re a student and had a bad year, just think of all the possibilities for a better year to come. Clear the blackboard slate (what an archaic term) and start anew with wonder and a sense of adventure.

Summer vacation, from school, is indeed worth celebrating. Take the time to smell the proverbial flowers, and parents…think back to when you were in school and were on summer holidays.

Bike rides with buddies, sleepovers with best friends, playing games inside and out, watching movies or TV shows, going on a fantastical adventure in a good book, swimming at the local pool or a gazillion other fun-filled summer memories.

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