Spring is winding down, and summer is in clear view. Camp details are being finalized. Fundraisers for short-term mission trips are everywhere. Teens are amped for the school year to get done and to enter into the rhythm of the summer.
So have you thought about parents lately? Why? Because any parent with a teen knows that the school year provides a structure to family life, and that structure can quickly unravel during the summer. As youth workers, the health and vitality of teenagers’ family lives should be a high priority for our ministries. Yet often times, in the midst of all the activity, we can overlook caring for and equipping parents.
We know that youth ministry can be overwhelming and that you can’t do everything. So we put together some tips and resources you can use to help parents with the transition into summer.
Parents need information on how to transition to summer without experiencing an imbalance in family life.
- Transition Tips: We created this list of tips for you to give to parents to help them think about planning their transition to summer. Email it to all your parents using the mass email feature in the Tracking Assistant section in your BFO subscription.
- Parent Further: This is a great site to point parents to for practical ideas for creating healthy and vital family practices.
Parents need practical help with transitioning to summer.
- Transition Night: Host a parent night at your church for the explicit purpose of parents helping parents transition to summer. Ask two or three parents to share their summer family schedules, how they change their daily routines, and what they do to stay connected and encourage family faith practices during the summer months.
- Ask Parents: See how the church can help families transition to the summer.
Parents need to know they are not alone and that they are valued.
- Texting All Parents! Add all of the parents’ cell information into the Tracking Assistant section in your BFO subscription. And send all of them encouraging texts about parenting and faith on a weekly basis.
- Summer Survival Kits: Create summer survival kits for parents. Include a note of encouragement, a family devotional book, a family movie, and a list of engaging family activities that parents can do with their teens.
Parents need to be involved in all aspects of their teens’ summer lives.
- Invite Parents: Ask parents to participate in the youth group activities throughout the summer. It will give them more time to connect with their children and will be great for all the teens to see the faith of families lived out!
- Don’t Compete: Make sure that parents don’t feel like they’re competing with the youth group for time with their children. Communicate clearly and regularly, asking for input from parents about all the summer activities.
Photo credit: ashley.adcox