Try these 3 challenges and see what fun learning can be had by keeping things simple!
Educating your child at home can seem like an impossible task – lists of sight words to practice, 100 reading books sent home, and is it me, or is maths changing every single week??
Whether your child is in school or at home, education has become a serious business. Most of us are desperately looking for ways to make learning at home fun again!
1. Read and laugh
We all know the importance of reading, so I’m not going to bore you with details of random studies done on kids in Finland or explain how kids in Shanghai are achieving world peace through a love of reading (may or may not be true). But the main point: Reading is FUN.
When I first starting reading with my children, I was consumed by the mechanics of it all. Getting the words right became more important than enjoying the time together.
If your child opens a book and decides for freestyle their own story using just the pictures, let them! Not only is this is a fantastic show of creativity, but it creates a positive memory which they will grow up to associate with reading. Relax, they will still learn how to read!
Let your child read anything they want (within reason. No adult content and horror stories, of course). When my son was in school, his class got the chance to take books home from the school library. He got super excited when he found a graphic novel about an magic amulet.
The teacher told him to put it back.
He couldn’t bring it home because it was ‘too advanced for him’ and he needed to pick something easier. My son was upset all day! Since then, I have had a hard and fast rule: with gentle guidance from me, my kids can pick any book they want. If it’s too advanced, I’ll help them.
2. Set challenges together
The inquisitiveness of a young child is never-ending. It doesn’t matter what topic we are discussing, my boy will have a million questions about something completely different – and I didn’t have all the answers.
It’s important for a child to realise it is ok to say ‘I don’t know.’ By venturing to find the answers together, they will learn vital research and critical thinking skills, you will bond during the experience, and you’ll find out something new! Explore the topic together. Hit the library, find YouTube videos, and search the internet – but do it together.
3. Get online
With the sheer number of homeschooling families out there, it takes less than 5 minutes to find a blog or website with activities, ideas, and resources for learning at home. Here are some of my favourite sites for inspiration and resources:
But you don’t have to be a homeschooler to take advantage of this. Set aside 1 or 2 hours a week when you and your child can do some of these activities together. You could go by theme; learn about the Romans and build a model chariot; read an old children’s classic and complete activity sheets; you could even do a science experiment and fill out a lab report.
Get creative and find a way to bond with your child through fun learning at home. I would love to see what you guys come up with! Share your activities with #ODWFunLearningChallenge