how i’m planning for the uk school summer holidays

SUMMER HOLIDAYS ARE ON THEIR WAY, ARE YOU READY?

The Great British summer holidays will be on us soon enough, and I’m determined to be more organised this year. UK School summer holidays last for 6 weeks from July to September each year. I know it’s happening so why does it creep on me every time? Every year I leave the plans open ended which doesn’t always work, especially with a child on the spectrum. Being organised and planning for a successful break is definitely the way forward for me to feel more in control and minimise stress for my little ones (and myself).

While I was doing the Barnardo’s Cygnet Course we were taught a module about sensory processing. I was hit by a wave of inspiration, opened up Canva and designed a summer poster to make it more fun for us all.

That’s when I decided to split the holidays into categories and then make plans around those categories. I’ve called it H & K’s Sensory Summer and I’ve created posters for each week in Canva so we know exactly what we’re doing. Because I’ve been so organised this year I only have 7 days to fill across two weeks so I’m feeling confident we’ll have a great time this summer. We’ve decided to stay South West based but a mini break in London is on our agenda just before the summer break.

SENSORY SUMMER CATEGOIES

NATURE

WATER

SEASIDE/BEACH

SPORT/GAMES

FUN

Most of the plans hit on at least two of these categories at a time, and that’s when you know you’re winning!

STUDLAND BAY BEACH HUTS – ONE WEEK RENTAL

We love beautiful beaches in the UK so I’ve booked a beach hut at Studland for the first time and we can’t wait to go. We went to Studland bay for the first time last summer for the day, parking for free in the National Trust carpark because we’re members.

It’ll be a staycation week as we couldn’t even find a holiday park with availability, so we’ll be going each day from home which is about an hour away depending on traffic. There are toilet facilities, a shop and restaurant nearby. Sidenote: Do you think a staycation means day trips from home and a holiday in the UK? Apprently there’s been a big debate what staycation means! I booked it through the National Trust at Studland Bay and they were so helpful. A week cost me £210 and Studland in Dorset is a stunning area to visit, we’re planning on doing the world war two walk and Studland is the UK beach that most reminds me of Australia, where I spent a year backpacking in my early twenties.

Beach huts have been part of the British seaside since late Victorian times. The earliest examples in Studland appeared more than 100 years ago.

Today, around 260 huts are dotted along the beach. Some 50 National Trust beach huts are available for rent.

The huts are divided into colour-coded zones, giving you the choice of front row seats on the beach or a more secluded spot among the dunes.

National Trust Studland website

TRIPLE HIT OF SENSORY FEEDBACK – SAND + WATER + NATURE

A WHOLE WEEK IN CORNWALL

Gorgeous Mousehole, West Cornwall

We’ll spend a week in Mousehole too, of course as we do every year. Our plans are to find new beaches (top points for sand dunes) and the best picnic spots preferably with picnic benches. This mum struggles sitting on the ground! If you have any tips for beaches we can visit with Maple, let me know in the comments section below!

We want to save some pennies and eat out for our main meal, we’ll pack up a lunch each day and head out to a new beach! It’ll be fun to find dog friendly beaches too. From September we’re taking Dove Cottage off the rental market for a year, she’s looking abit tired and needs a refresh and we didn’t want to rush it or do it between guests in case works overran. It’s hard enough redecorating remotely, let alone around other people. The bathroom may get a refurb too! Which I’ll show on stories on our Dove Cottage Instagram account.

Follow us on Instagram @dove_cottage_mousehole

Collecting seaglass and seashells is also high on our agenda this year which is a big sensory hit in itself!

SPORT SUMMER CLUB

Master H has never been ‘into sport’ as such. Preferring natural play like building dens, playing with trucks in the mud etc! However, lately he’s come home from school having played football at lunchtime with his friends. He talks so animately about it that I’ve booked a sports summer club for the first time. Held at Yeovil Town FC and he’ll go with his friend who is sports mad. I think it’ll do him the world of good to be outside, learning new skills.

As I said, we’ve always focussd on more nature led activities like den building in the past, but he’s old enough to be away from me for most of the day and he’ll have so much fun learning more football skills! It’ll leave me and Katie space to do other things that Harry wouldn’t enjoy, they rarely want to do the same things anyway. Unless they’re on a beach then they’re completely aligned!

READ MORE ABOUT THE SENSORY BENEFITS OF SPORTS

Now it’s your turn! What plans do you have for the UK Summer Holidays this year? I think it’s so important to share our ideas to help each other out, the holidays are long but together we can make them fun and as happy as possible for both kids and parents!

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