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Summer Opportunities For Teens

If you're the parent of a teenager, you've probably given some thought as to what your child should do this summer.

If they're not in camp, it may seem hard to find activities for your teen, but Ann Shoket, who is the executive editor at CosmoGIRL! magazine, tells The Early Show co-anchor Hannah Storm that there are a lot of things your teen can do that will make you both happy.

There are, however, a number of reasons that can make it difficult for teens to find things to do -- starting with transportation.

Kids today want to start working younger, and they want to have meaningful jobs and make money, but you have to be a certain age to hold a job. Depending on where you live, it's usually between the ages of 14-16. There isn't a federal law, so it's not the same age across the board, and sometimes you can get working papers if you're not old enough.

This summer, teens want to make money, meet cute guys or girls -- and they want to have a sense of purpose.

Most teens want to have some responsibility, says Shoket. They have ambitions and they're very focused at an extremely young age. They know what they want, and these are experiences that help them grow and mature and get them ready to go back to school.

Also, they all have to write those "What I Did This Summer" essays when they get to school, so they want to have something to brag about. For instance, "I registered 10,000 people to vote in the election" or "I washed 75 cars and 150 dogs and I made $5000," Shoket explains.

But from CosmoGIRL's perspective, this is the summer of DIY - Do it Yourself. It's a philosophy that's more than being crafty -- it means customizing your summer experience. You can apply the do-it-yourself theory to a summer job, as well. Teens could become a dog walker, a landscaper, a delivery person, tutor older or younger people in computer skills, or help young kids with sports.

Teens who want to work should go to:
teens4hire.org
coolworks.com
resortjobs.com

For those who want to volunteer, visit:
Rockthevote.com
johnkerry.com
georgewbush.com

And for those younger teens or those who are looking to relax and remember the fun times they've had, there are some fun crafty projects such as customizing your car (if you're old enough), your room, CD holders, pillows, jewelry, quilts.

Here are other Web links for more information:
familyresource.com
quintcareers.com
teenagerstoday.com
volunteermatch.org
servenet.org

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