So, I was comparing notes with other parents. I was interested in knowing how exactly their children were being engaged at their different summer schools. It was annoying to find out that in some schools, what is supposed to be a downtime for the children is being clustered with the rigors of basic numeracy and literacy.

Yes, some of these children are being clamoured with learning the same old maths and English, in exactly the same, old way they were taught during their regular school term. I’m not saying that these little ones don’t get to do some of the other fun, creative stuffs. They do!!! However, the bulk of their time is still spent behind their desks in their classrooms.

To make matters worse, they also return back home with homework. Yes, homework!!! Now, if the homework was even something fun and creative, I could stomach it. But, again, it’s the same, old maths and English homework.

I don’t know about you but I believe that after a long year of hard work, this long vacation is that time of the year when the children should let down their hair and have some creative fun. I’m not saying that learning should be totally cut out. However, it should be some seriously fun and creative learning. I’m talking about creative activities which sharpen the brain, develops skills/abilities and inspires learning. Even if you insist that they should do some time behind their desks, it should only be a small fraction of thier time.

Another mom told me that during this period she deliberately goes all out, looking for unconventional centres during the long break. I mean that she does a deliberate search for centres which will harness her child’s creativity. As she noted, such centres may not necessarily be popular by the numbers because to accomplish purposeful engagement, they have to insist on hosting only a controllable number of children. If they don’t do this, the children are unlikely to get enough out of the experience.

With that said, let me share what one of our readers Bukola Adeyemi Oguntola is doing during the summer break. She too identified the above gap and rather than moaning about it, she got to work and made plans to host a summer school, right in the middle of her space. Don’t worry, she is not just one of those people trying to make money by opening up schools. She is actually into all sorts of crafts and so yes, she has all the necessary skills.

She therefore decided that instead of engaging just her daughter, she would also engage some of the other children within her Abeokuta neighbourhood.

Some of the activities she has lined up for them include fun stuffs like cake baking, paper matting, sports, painting and drawing, making emoji faces, movie day, etc. I am totally impressed with what she has pulled together and that is why I have attached some amateur pictures of some of the activities that have already taken place.

If you are based in Abeokuta, I would advise you get in touch with Bukola Adeyemi Oguntola because even if this summer cannot be salvaged, subsequent occasions definitely can. As in, why do we have to wait till summer before engaging our children this way? I honestly believe that there should be weekly doses of creative stuffs like this!!!

Believe me, the creative thinking that accompanies such creative activities is part of what distinguishes one child from the next, when push eventually comes to shove in the dog-eat-dog world we live in.