6 Ways to Encourage Your Teen’s Summer Hobbies

3 min to read
Teenager engaging in summer hobby

Although most students look forward to summer break, boredom often sets in just a few weeks into the season. And as some parents know all too well, bored teens tend to spend a lot of time staring at screens unproductively. However, now is a great time to encourage hobbies for the summer and help your child discover activities and interests that bring them joy and set them up for future success.

Not sure where to start when it comes to summer hobbies for kids? Let’s explore some steps you can take to motivate your teen to get involved in new endeavors:

1. Talk to your kids about their interests.

The first step to encouraging your child to pursue their interests is to have an open conversation about what they enjoy doing and what goals they have for the summer. Ask questions to gauge their feelings on certain topics they have enjoyed studying in school and go from there. Here are some examples of how to get a conversation flowing and eventually move toward discussing summer hobbies:

  • Ask your child about their favorite subjects in school. What do they enjoy learning about?
  • Ask your child about someone who inspires them. Is it a person in their life or a famous person?
  • Ask your child about what brings them joy. Is it arts and crafts? Sports? Reading? Writing? 

2. Provide the right supplies and materials.

Once your child has chosen a summer hobby to explore, they’ll likely need supplies or materials. This could be art supplies, sports equipment, or other gear. Spend some time researching and learning more about their hobbies to get a sense of what your child might need. You can also reach out to other parents with real-life experience for advice or the dos and don’ts of certain summer hobbies for teens.

3. Help make their hobbies relevant to their future.

Summer is a great time for teens to take steps to work toward their future. A summer job learning web design, an internship or volunteer position at an animal shelter, or spending time learning a new language can all be a productive use of those extra hours.  From exploring potential careers to strengthening their soft skills, there are so many possibilities for teens to gain some extra experience while learning valuable life lessons. Plus, work, hobbies, and volunteer hours look great on college applications.

A family playing sports as part of a summer hobby for teens. 

4. Encourage physical activities.

Only 26% of high school students participate in 60 minutes of physical activity per day, according to the CDC. However, experts recommend 60 minutes of moderate aerobic physical activity at least three days per week. If your child isn’t already involved in some type of physical activity, consider encouraging them to try something new, such as:

  • Sports: Community based or intramural
  • Nature walks
  • Running
  • Biking
  • Hiking

5. Spend quality time together.

Without the stress of the school year, you may have more time to bond as a family. Choose activities that the entire family enjoys and schedule time weekly time together. You can pick a new activity each week or create a tradition out of it. Don’t be afraid to get playful—show your kids you’re willing to have some fun. Some ideas include:

  • Family game night
  • Scavenger hunt
  • Cook a new dish
  • Bird watching
  • Movie night
  • Read together

6. Suggest a project that will last all summer.

Come up with summer hobbies for teens that will keep them busy all season long. At the end of the summer, they can feel proud of all they accomplished. Start by sitting down and brainstorming the possibilities. Here are some ideas to start:

  • Plant a garden: From vegetables to flowers and pretty plants, starting a garden is a great way to let your teen take on more responsibility and give them something to do all summer. 

  • Plant an event: Let your kids help plan a back-to-school party, family reunion, family vacation or other event. It may even help them practice communication skills budgeting and time management.

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