Living in Finland

Summer activities for kids

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You wouldn’t guess by looking outside that it’s time to talk about summer. If you have school-aged kids, it’s time to start planning what they’ll do when school’s out and you’re still at work. Let’s talk about summer activities for kids. 

Vacation time

Schools in Finland finish by the end of the first week of June. They start again around mid-August. This leaves kids with two and a half months of vacation time. 

Although employees in Finland do have rather generous amounts of vacation time globally speaking, parents are still left with trying to figure out how to take care of their kids when school’s out and they are still at work. Thankfully there are different types of summer activities for kids available. 

Most of the summer activities for kids are scheduled for the three weeks before Mid-Summer and then again for the first couple of weeks of August. This is because the most popular vacation time in Finland is July. Activity organizers assume that that’s when families vacation together and there’s no need for their services.

The problem of filling up the time of vacationing children really concerns only school-aged children. Although individual daycare centers may close for July, the municipalities do provide families with an alternative. This might mean that during the summer your daily routines will change as you need to take your child to a different daycare center. But at least your child will have daycare. School kids are on their own.  

Why talk about this now?

You might wonder why we bring this topic up now. Summer vacation is still three months away. Well, we bring this up now because now is the time to check out what your options are and decide what you want to do. 

The organizers start advertising their services just about now and the most popular summer activities for kids fill up fast.

Experienced parents beat rookies in this sport. And by rookies, I mean parents of first graders irrespective of nationality. I myself didn’t realize that one had to be on to it this early in the year when our kids were in first grade. Thankfully my mother-in-law alerted me to the enrollments. Without her, I would have waited until late April and early May just to find out that interesting summer activities for kids were already full.

In some cases, it might be that the organizers don’t yet take enrolments, but if you check out the various possibilities now you’ll be able to take note when the actual enrolments begin. If they tell you when their enrollments begin you better be prepared to sit by your computer that second. Otherwise, it might just be too late. 

Summer activities for kids – plenty of variety

There is really a lot of variety in the summer activities for kids, provided that you are willing to pay and your kid speaks Finnish. You can choose between day camps and away camps, between camps with different topics, and you can choose different organizers. Day camps organized by cities and churches are often quite inexpensive. Those by commercial actors can be quite pricy. 

Here we’ll give you some suggestions to check out and research further. The info for these is only in Finnish. You’ll find English-language camps further down.

Science and nature camps:

Sports camps:

T-shirt from a summer football school

Other camps:

Possibilities in English and in Swedish

Some activity organizers do provide summer activities for kids also in English. Here are some possibilities:

Noteworthy

If your child doesn’t speak Finnish or speaks it very little you can always still ask the camp organizers if he/she is welcome to attend the camp. Please note, however, that the organizers might discourage you from doing that. Proving extra assistance to someone always takes up resources and some organizers might not be willing to do that.

Make sure that you find out if the price of the day camp includes lunch and make sure you know what type of lunch that is. You might have to provide our children with snacks to help them with their energy levels. 

The camp instructions always tell their recommendations for clothing, footwear, sunscreen, water bottles, and also for insurance coverage. Outdoor camps also tell what they have as alternative activities in case of bad weather. It’s good to know what you can expect to get for the price and what is expected of you and your child.

Hope you are able to find great summer activities for your child!

The mission of Finnwards is to help you build a uniquely Finnish life for yourself and your family. Our online tutorials will give you the information and tools you need to succeed in your professional and private life in Finland: https://school.finnwards.com/


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