Fish and chips on the beach; the test match on Boxing Day; a sunny day and a hot seatbelt. These are just a few of the iconic combos of summer in Aotearoa. Yet another iconic summer combo is young people and average decision-making.
Over the summer, there are a myriad of risky situations and social pressures which young people have to navigate, along with a surplus of free time. This means encouraging our teens to use their basic risk-assessment skills becomes even more important than ever. It could just be reminding them to put on sunscreen. It could be slightly more complex risk assessment, like helping them to decide if it’s actually a good idea to jump off the roof of the house into the pool to impress their four weird mates.
There is something about freedom, the sun and a bunch of mates which, together, provide the perfect ingredients for a memorable summer. However, those same ingredients can lead to some young people making the types of decisions that also create a memorable summer, but for all of the wrong reasons.
So how do you support your kids – especially your teens – to create positive summer memories while also keeping themselves safe?