Exciting and Engaging Summer School Activity Ideas to Boost Social-Emotional Learning

Whether you're a parent of a primary-aged child or rocking a summer school position (bless your heart), we know how the summer hours can go by slowly, while the weeks simultaneously, and heartlessly, zoom by. 
If you're feeling overwhelmed with how to tackle boredom, cater to teeny tiny attention spans or to prevent new-routine-meltdowns, we've got SEL activity suggestions for you.
Don't forget to grab your Summer SEL Choice Board freebie at the end of this blog post!

Team-building Exercises

No, we don't mean stifled, anxiety-inducing icebreakers. Creating a space for organic teamwork and connection is the best way to support social skills through problem-solving, goal-setting, and growth mindset. 
Try summer-themed collaborative posters to instil pride for having worked together to create a stunning mural with positive messages.

Outdoor Exploration

This is a give-in! When our children become unsettled and squirrelly, it's usually indicative of a biological need to move their body and to get outside. Inquiry-based learning in an outdoor space comes with numerous benefits, including hands-on learning, curiosity, grounding, problem-solving skills, creativity, social and emotional development, environmental awareness, physical fitness, that all contribute to better overall health.
Try mindful scavenger hunts to instil a sense of wonder packed with grounding skills.

Art from the Heart

Be ready for rain or shine with engaging activities to nurture emotional expression, imagination, and social emotional learning skills. 
Try these summer-themed SEL crafts to feel good about filling your days in mindful and empowering ways. 

Community Projects

While most schools actively participate in social justice projects during the holiday/ Christmas season, there are plenty of ways in which your kids can get involved in making your community a better place during the warmer months. Participating in social justice projects provides children with ample opportunities to develop empathy, compassion, and a sense of responsibility. These experiences help kids understand the needs of others, foster gratitude, and develop a sense of purpose and belonging.
Try STEM + Empathy Challenges as a minds-on to get them inspired to apply this kind of thinking in the real world.


Summer is such a fun time to extend your lessons on mindfulness and to even incorporate some yoga. These can help children manage stress, develop resilience, and improve their emotional well-being- think of it as soul food that helps us become more grounded, in-tune with our surroundings and grateful for what we have. Here are some of our favorite YouTube breaks- incorporating daily affirmations and breathing breaks into your busy summer days will help boost self-esteem and to keep grounded through big emotions.

However you decide to spend your summer days with the kids, planting seeds of social emotional learning throughout the summer will always prove to be a crucial investment to set children up to bloom, come Back to School, with the tools they will need to support positive relationship-building, self-esteem, emotional intelligence and academic resilience.
For your free summer SEL choice boards, click the image below:

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