Wondering how to occupy your kids this school holidays? Looking for that well-deserved break but don’t want to put a pause on your kids’ learning?
Short as the holidays may seem, they can feel even longer without the right activities to stimulate those restless little minds. But don’t worry, your child’s everyday surroundings are the best places for them to put learning concepts into practice. So, why not keep them engaged with fulfilling everyday activities that they can still learn and have fun with! These simple exercises below can also double up as fun family-time.
1. Be your little chef
On a regular school day, on top of taking care of the family’s meals and necessities, where would you find the time to teach your child to cook? But the holidays are perfect for turning your little one into a chef!
Even while following you or the recipe for instructions, cooking and baking offer teaching points. Using a measuring spoon, your child will need to measure various ingredients, offering opportunities to pick up numeracy skills. And if the recipe requires a form of estimation – perhaps to sprinkle some water onto the flour – let your child have a go at it. This would be perfect for them to experiment and gain confidence in their actions.
Besides the usual pencils and Lego pieces, your child will be exposed to everyday kitchen essentials and work the tiniest muscles of their hands! Through pouring, mixing and stirring ingredients, children exercise and perfect their fine motor skills. Perhaps experiment with your child a simple recipe for some refreshing konnyaku jelly. They will touch, hold and work with moulds of different shapes and sizes and get creative with the different-coloured food dye.
2. Be inspired by the neighbourhood
Looking for a way to spice up the daily walks with your child? Getting a healthy dose of the outdoors is essential, but it’s understandable that after some time, you might run out of ways to inspire your child with the outdoors.
But you can easily work with what you have in the neighbourhood. For a walk in the park, exercise their observation skills by asking them to draw the various leaves they find. Similarly, a walk along the main road won’t be any less boring. Compete with your child – ask them to count the number of red cars while counting the number of blue ones yourself. This simple exercise levels up their numeracy and concentration skills.
While encouraging them to be little explorers, you also get them to be more interested and curious about their surroundings. Soon enough, they’ll be asking you to bring them outside more often.
3. Family-reading time
Reading exercises are always different. And that’s because you’d always grab a different book. If you’ve found difficulty finding time to read with your child during the school term, the holidays are your best chance to develop a good reading habit with them.
Family reading is a classic activity that never gets old. In fact, it’s good to pick up literacy skills from as young as first grade age. Sit down with your child every night for a bedtime story. Soon enough, you’ll find your child picking up sounds and then learning new words.
If you’ve already established this good reading habit, then it’s definitely a time for you to bring the learning experience to the next level. Encourage them to ask questions, act or even draw their favourite scene. In the process, you’ll get your child to remain curious and creative.
4. Grow some edibles
What better way is there to get hands-on than by making something which your family can eat? Inspire your child with nature; let them discover how plants grow and how their food is produced. When gardening in your backyard, you’ll instil responsibility in your child to take care of the plants.
Cultivate green fingers as the family explores and feast on mung bean, sweet potato, or tomatoes. The visible growth is another fun activity – chart the growing as a family!
Educational and fun activities don’t need to be extremely elaborate. You can make do with the things you already have at home or in your neighbourhood! As long as you keep the minds of your child stimulated, they’ll be able to stay curious and learn more.
In and out of the classroom, it’s essential to engage children in activities to learn, discover and develop themselves. At international schools in Singapore, sports and wellness play a huge part of the curriculum. From basketball courts to well-equipped gymnasiums, there are competitive and recreational opportunities to stimulate your child’s mind. As children are always learning, you just need to know how to turn their curiosities into teaching opportunities.