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Throwback summer: Are kids today overprogrammed?




Larry Mantle at Universal Studios circa 1968.
Larry Mantle at Universal Studios circa 1968.
Larry Mantle at Universal Studios circa 1968.
Larry Mantle hiking in the Sierras.
Larry Mantle at Universal Studios circa 1968.
"When we were very young, summers meant a week at the beach for my family, with my stylish mother and father (that's him behind the camera) and my two little sisters, eating sand and getting sunburned. Our brother, not yet conceived, missed all the fun."
Larry Mantle at Universal Studios circa 1968.
Taylor Coffman at the beach with her Canadian pen pal.


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Is your child spending this summer at film camp, cooking camp, soccer camp, art camp or some mish-mash of them all?

Overprogrammed kids are no new concept — youth in the U.S. are frequently bouncing between school and extracurricular activities with hardly a moment to themselves.

Summers — in the past a time for kids to be bored, or at the very least, unstructured, seem more and more to include less free play and boredom and more programmed activities. We asked for your photos and memories of summers past and present -- days spent working a lemonade stand or playing alone in your neighborhood, coming home only for meals.

How are kids today spending their summers? How do you remember your childhood summers? What’s the best way for families to take advantage of their time off?

Share your photos with us on Instagram and Twitter using the hashtag #tbtsummer. Here's what others have to say about their childhood summers:

New Mexico Summers circa 1990 meant: Tang Popsicles, manmade mud rivers in the backyard, and seeing how long you could hang upside down from the swing set without passing out. #tbt #tbtsummer #monkeybars #childhood

#NewMexicoSummer

Tbt 1960 - I seem to make faces in just about every picture I've found - still do! #sistertwins #indianasummer #inflatables #tbtsummer

#IndianaSummer

Guest:

Darby Saxbe, assistant professor of psychology at USC, where she is focused on understanding health and well-being in the context of family and peer relationships