The school terms are a magical thing for parents. Our kids get into such a good rhythm and learning is an easy part of everyday life. Better than that, our children are actively learning from peers, educators, and other people they’re in contact with throughout the day while we’re at work.
But what happens in the downtime? What happens when they’re not in childcare, preschool, or school?
Of course, we’re always thinking of ways to help them build on their skills but keeping it light and fun can get challenging. So, we’ve come up with some easy ideas to keep kids learning whether they’re going for a walk or you’re getting some downtime too.
Counting odds and evens
When you’re out for a walk, point out the house numbers on your side of the road. Counting using fingers and having a chat about where else the numbers might appear. There might be two children in your house, six family members in total, or 18 children in your child’s class. Later, you might like to count the lollies in the bag, add the number of fingers and toes in your house or check out how many windows there are in your home.
Exploring through scavenger hunts
Learning in the great outdoors is a magical thing. So many wonderful memories are embedded into a child’s mind from exploration and it’s well-known that children learn and recall more information when they’re engaged in the activity. When you’re out and about, ask your young learners how many colours they see, what shapes they might find, or the letters they notice on the street signs. If you’re keen, jot them down to chat about later and see if you can match anything you found outdoors to inside your home.
If you’re keen to get out and about, going on a field trip is an amazing experience for you all and it will give you the chance to consciously reconnect. Museums, Zoos, aquariums – they’re all part of the wonderful world of education and kids LOVE them!
Of course, there are more traditional methods like storytelling and daily reading, and we all know the importance of reading, but how we read can change dramatically from the way we engage in this activity at their childcare service or school.
Try acting out the characters using different voices, get dramatic with movement, or even dress like the characters. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how much children engage with the story.
Finish this story
Traditionally start the story and stop at a critical, climactic moment. Ask your child to predict what might happen next and get them to finish the story for you, with their alternate ending. You might find you have a great author on your hands!
Not all learning has to involve parents. Take a break and let your child loose on an online platform specifically designed for and tailored to them. There are so many programs that have all the fun and games your child needs to learn and discover, tracking their progress and capping their time.
- Reading Eggs
- ABC Mouse
However you decide to keep the kids engaged, just remember they’ll never know they’re learning while they’re having fun – and you get to spend some magical time with them too!