Help the kids get back into learning mode with these fun educational games! Check out these great at home activities for kids from Louise…
Find 10 different objects around your house and place on a tray. Choose items with different colours, textures, and shapes. Good examples would be a banana, sponge, ornament, and pack of cards. Let the children look through them, pick them up, and think about the items. After five minutes, take the tray away and ask them to list the items on a piece of paper. You could try this several different times with different items and watch the children start to create strategies to remember.
With instructions, calculations, ingredients, and results, baking is one the most enjoyable science experiments out there! Spend an afternoon with your children in the kitchen, handing the responsibility over to them for the preparation stages. Whether they choose to make a cake, scones, or something savoury, the beauty of this activity is that it wont feel like hard work at all – and you can all enjoy the reaps of their labour (if they get the recipe right, that is…)
Let your child’s imagination flourish, whilst practicing their language skills. Start by creating a set of flash cards with different words and pictures on them. Tailor these to the age of your child, with simple words for the youngest (such as House, Dog, and Car) and more advanced for the older (such as Suitcase, Dragon, iPad, and Waterpark). Let the child pick a series of 10 cards and ask them to write a story that connects the different words (or give it verbally if they are younger). They could also illustrate their story, create a front cover, and number the pages to create a keepsake book.
Time to create your own family band! Set up your band of instruments, saucepans, upturned pots, and wooden spoons, before playing pieces of music to the children. Ask them to bang, blow, or strum along to the rhythm, before switching off the music and continuing the beat. Alternate between classical and modern pieces of music for variety. Younger children will need you to help find the rhythm first, but may be able to repeat on the own as the music continues.
Arts and crafts
Get crafty and encourage thought by getting the children to create self-portraits with Paper Mache Balloons. Start by tearing newspaper into strips and blowing up the balloons and setting both to the side. Then make the paste by adding one-part flour to one-part water and mixing together (you can add a sprinkle of cinnamon to make it smell nice too). Dip each strip of newspaper into the paste before laying it over the surface of the balloon and repeat until the balloon is covered with a thick layer of paper mache. Once it is dry, the children can get creative by painting their faces and adding extras like buttons for eyes and wool for hair.
Create a small shop in your front room with a table, store sign, and stock that includes snacks and drinks priced between 10 and 30 fils. Give each of your children 1 AED to spend at the store, which will require them to calculate what they can afford. They could use a pen or paper or do the calculations in their head. You could stagger this throughout the day, giving them 1 AED to spend over a 24-hour period and repeating the next day.
Ask the children to sit down and list their favourite six different dance moves. This could include jumping, spinning, and marching (or more advanced moves if they learn ballet or dance at school). After they have written down their moves, ask them to roll a die a number of times (start at three rolls for younger children, rising as they get older). The numbers they roll will match the moves on their list, which creates a dance routine. Press play on the music and let them practice their routine.
Fill a box with a series of props, which could include dressing-up clothes, hats, a broom, sunglasses, soft toys, or a drum. Play a series of familiar nursery rhymes and ask the children to select props quickly and act along to the words and music. Once you’ve listened through the series once, repeat and see if the children remember their original choices and actions.