School may be out for summer, but that doesn’t mean you want your kids to stop learning for the next several months. Young children are developing rapidly, and a constant state of learning helps ensure that they’re developing in all the right ways.
Of course, summer is all about playing and having fun. With that being the case, find ways to make learning fun. Here are X ways you can help your kids love learning this summer, so it never feels like a chore:
It’s no secret that kids these days love technology. In fact, your biggest struggle this summer will probably be finding ways to keep them off of their electronics. Instead of placing a temporary ban on video games and devices, look for ways to put an educational spin on the technology these use.
Take YouTube, for example. While there’s a lot of content that is essentially a waste of time, there are also thousands of interesting videos that can teach your kids a lot about math, science, and history. If your kids want to watch TV or funny videos, have them watch something educational first. They might even change their preferences for these videos instead.
School field trips are always a hit, so use that to your advantage. In addition, family trips with an educational spin can be just as fun as any other trip you normally take during the summer.
Plan some educational trips in your online calendar throughout the rest of the summer. Go check out the local museum or the closest zoo. Teach some small lessons about what you’ll go and see beforehand so everyone can really enjoy seeing the sights and witnessing everything they learned in person.
Many young children are hands-on learners, meaning they have more fun and internalize more when they’re able to dig right into what they’re being taught. That’s why so many elementary school teachers put together awesome art projects and building exercises because it’s such a great way to help kids learn new concepts and enjoy doing so.
There are plenty of activities you can plan and execute at home that everyone will enjoy. For example, you can learn about different chemical reactions with the old Coca-Cola and Mentos trick or by building a baking soda volcano together. A family bottle rocket competition makes for a fun way to illustrate physics and engineering. Even a simple art project will get your kids using their minds and imaginations.
Set Reading Goals
Reading is one of the best things your kids can do over the summer, regardless of their age. Reading helps improve memory, build vocabulary, and can even reduce stress. With books catering to all ages, no one is exempt from enjoying a good read.
To help your kids make time for reading, set some goals for them and plan out reading times in an online calendar. For example, a good daily goal is a half-hour of reading after lunch or right before bed. Even though this is the minimum time commitment, kids can easily get hooked on a good book and want to read for even longer.
Teach Learning Habits
The ultimate goal is to help your kids develop a lifelong habit of learning. This is a rather abstract goal, so you need some tangible goals that can be visualized to make it happen.
Something you’ll often hear is that you should try to learn something new every day. This isn’t a bad summer goal for kids where there’s so much to be learned. For them, learning about a new type of dinosaur can help and be one of the most fun things they learned that summer.
A summer-long goal can also be the start of a lifetime habit of learning, especially if you set the example. Every summer is an opportunity to learn a new skill, like archery, sewing, or skateboarding. If your kids can see you accomplish your goals every year, they’ll feel more inclined to follow in your footsteps.
Invite Some Friends Over
Unless you’ve been homeschooling, your kids are more used to learning in a classroom environment. As a result, they might be more comfortable and have more fun learning with some friends over. Additionally, they’ll have a playmate or two to enjoy the rest of the day with after the learning is done.
Coordinate your schedule with other parents by sharing online calendars. For example, you and another family can take turns hosting a fun summer lesson to share the teaching burden. This will give you more time to prepare your next teaching activity and gives your kids more time with friends.
Whatever you decide to do to promote summer learning, do so with a plan. If you’re intentionally making time for learning activities, you’re more likely to actually follow through. Otherwise, your educational efforts might fizzle out after a few short weeks.
Using an online calendar is your best bet when making a summer learning program. With this tool, you can plan the exact dates and times you want to have lessons, trips, and activities. Better yet, you can plan all of this around the fun summer events like lake days, sporting events, and camping trips. Your kids will get a healthy balance of both when your online calendar is involved.
Learning can and should be fun, especially for kids. Who knows, you might even learn a thing or two yourself along the way. So grab your online calendar and get started; summer will only last so long.
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