AD | Gifted
Having children can be one of the most fulfilling things you get to do in your life. To watch them grow and develop is a privilege. But sometimes it can be quite difficult to occupy them, especially if you seem to have a bit of free time at home. These days there is so much more your child can do with their time. Steam their favourite TV shows, play on games consoles, talk to their friends online while playing games, the list goes on. It seems that the days where children would play with toys, or even spend large amounts of time with their parents has dwindled. Of course, excluding this past year.
Over the last twelve months, many of us had no choice but to homeschool our children. Teaching them, keeping them happy mentally and physically healthy. It has been exhausting. But the one thing we might have realised is how much our children can learn through play, spending time with us, and most importantly having fun. It could mean that you want to encourage more learning from home, even though they might be back at school and thriving in routine once more. But you might be wondering how to do it with it seeming like homework. With that in mind, here are some of the fun things you can do with your kids that can encourage home learning.
Baking and cooking together
Baking with children can be quite a messy activity. But one that children seem to love. Of course, it’s best if your children are toddlers and beyond. It enables you to teach them skills such as counting. However, it also presents opportunities to teach basic hand-eye coordination skills. Like placing ingredients in the bowl, using things like biscuit stencils and stirring things together.
Baking can be as easy or as complicated as you want it to be, but it can certainly be an opportunity to learn from home and through play. You could even extend this further from baking and teach your child how to cook basic meals or ignite a passion for cooking where they may eventually feel confident in the kitchen to make meals for the whole family. It can present opportunities to learn about different cultures where food is involved. It’s a great activity where all involved can have fun.
Enjoying the garden
There is something quite nostalgic about being outside, and your garden is the perfect place to let young children explore. Many of us have grown to appreciate our garden more so than ever before. It’s close by; it certainly doesn’t cost anything, but yet it can provide some amazing experiences. From learning about insects and nature to being active and playing. Your garden should be a space you utilise more frequently when you have young children.
As the weather gets better, you can spend more time outside. Younger children appreciate playing with water or sand, exploring new environments, and older children may appreciate the opportunity to sit and read in the garden, paint and be creative, as well as the learning opportunities it gives generally. No matter what age they are, the fresh air is great, and the experiences are priceless.
Heading out for a walk
Being outside, in general, is perfect for children and adults alike. So heading out for a walk somewhere new is a great activity you should be doing more. It’s a chance to see different things and experience new places. It’s a great opportunity to encourage your children to be more active. It’s so important that children spend less time on technology-based fun. With more focus and time exploring using physical activity and imagination.
The daily walk became part of our rituals and routines a few months back, and if it is a habit you developed, it is one you should try and keep up with. Out on a walk, children can spot new things, take activities with them where they can mark off things they see on their walks and gives you the chance to encourage outdoor learning.
Playing games together
There is no denying that everybody, including your children, loves the chance to play games together. Sitting down and playing something can bring you all together and give you the perfect chance to bond, and this is where Orchard Toys are a great investment. It doesn’t matter whether you are trying to teach First Times Tables, or help children with their Speed Spelling. It may even be older children who are wanting more confidence in their maths where Times Tables Heroes could be useful.
Although some of the children’s board games mentioned may sound solely focused on the educational side of things, they are a lot of fun. Playing games, such as these means your children are having fun, without necessarily realising that they are learning through the process.
Crafts and painting
Arts and crafts are amazing opportunities for young children to learn from home. From encouraging exploration through messy play to creating masterpieces. It helps to teach your children valuable skills along the way. Young children love an opportunity to get messy so painting can be a great thing, and if you are the kind of mum who isn’t keen on the mess, taking outside can be a great tip. It also provides you opportunities to discuss colours and help teach your children consequence in regards to colour changing. For example, mixing two colours creates a new colour entirely.
Sometimes you want to encourage play that isn’t particularly staged or managed. Imagination boxes can be created to let young children set up their version of fun. It could be dressing up clothes or for younger children or something sensory for touch and smell. They also create excellent opportunities for teaching different skills.
It can be as simple as utilising what is in your kitchen cupboards or a junk box where you have been collecting cardboard boxes or jars. Using some toys and setting them up differently gives them that invitation to play, and it is a great way to encourage the use of imagination. You could also set up educational games that will help with spelling and maths. There are some great ideas online that you could try.
Let’s hope this has inspired you to try and encourage more learning from home.
Win an Orchard Toys First Times Tables game
To help encourage learning from home with your child, we are lucky enough to have an Orchard Toys First Times Tables game to giveaway – a wonderful way to learn through play without them even realising.
PRIZE: Orchard Toys First Times Tables Game
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