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The Secrets of AOK… Always Optimizing Kids!

Studies show that significant mental, physical and emotional regression can occur if children are not provided with a regular schedule of mental and physical challenges. Here are a few helpful tips make the Summer months AOK… Always Optimizing Kids… when school aged children are not in school.

  • Maintain a regular sleep schedule. Of course, the optimal number of hours of sleep per night varies by age group but as a general rule, discourage late night television binge watching and lounging-in-bed-till-noon to “catch up”. Adequate sleep will also keep the grumpies away!
  • Monitor what is being eaten. Left to their own devices, children often tend to eat anything and everything… and too much of it. This can lead to childhood obesity, with is currently at an all time high across the country. Instill healthy eating habits and lifestyle focused on the recommended balance of grains, fruit, vegetables, dairy and fats. Doing so will help your stay child fit and functioning while keeping your grocery bills in check.
  • Encourage socialization, physical activity and mental stimulation. The importance of these three aspects of school attendance is often overlooked, which is why it is essential to keep them going while it is not in session. As the age-old adage says: use it or lose it. Seek out opportunities for group play to hone their social skills while reinforcing and expanding the disciplines of sharing and teamwork. Keep those young, curious minds active by providing a steady stream of mental challenges such as puzzles and math games. Increase their appreciation of the arts with craft projects, and introduce new skills such as cooking or gardening.

If you are not in a position to do these important actions on your own, consider enrolling your child in a local summer camp program. In order to ensure you are selecting one that he or she will enjoy and benefit from, interview the provider in advance. Some key questions to ask include:

  • What are their safety protocols?
  • What ages do they serve, and what size are playgroups?
  • What training and experience level does their staff have?
  • What type and frequency of food and/or snacks are provided?
  • What activities are offered, both onsite and through field trips?
  • What are their days and hours of operation, including when you may drop off and pick up?
  • What is the flexibility for attending: daily, weekly, monthly or full summer?

Wishing you and yours a fun, safe, and memorable Summer of 2021.


Kids ‘R’ Kids of Clayton is a five star child learning academy, serving the Clayton community for 15 years. For information about this or any other child related topic, including the services they provide, visit or call (919) 550-8864.