This blog is courtesy of Jenny Wise from Special Home Educator. For more of her blogs, click here.
Nothing spoils outdoor plans for a kid like rainy weather, but that shouldn’t be an excuse to let them veg out on their devices all afternoon — especially considering their amount of mobile screen time is 10 times higher than it was in 2011. This is not to say that technology can’t be useful when it comes to banishing boredom. Here are some fun and educational online resources that will keep your kids amused so you can retain your sanity.
Take a Canine Course
Sure, you may have a dog, but there’s a lot to be learned from a canine-inspired lesson plan. There are various age-appropriate activities that teach kids about different kinds of pets and the care that’s involved, the difference between wild and domestic animals, the importance of spaying or neutering, veterinarian technology, the role of a service animal, canine legislation, careers with dogs, the evolution of the pooch, animals throughout history, dog bite prevention, how to protect a pet in a weather disaster, character development through animal care, and more. Experts believe that kids learn and develop compassion when they interact and learn about animals.
Have an At-Home Science Fair
Nothing’s more fun than conducting a science experiment that fizzes, bubbles, pops, and changes colour or composition. There is an abundance of online exercises that make it easy for kids to conduct their own at-home science fair. If you have more than one child, institute a little friendly competition to see whose experiment was the most successful or interesting. Encourage your kids to summarise their projects in a few sentences, including key information such as facts from any background research and whether or not their results support or contradict their hypothesis.
Throw a Dance Party
Childhood obesity is on the rise, and this puts kids at risk for high blood pressure and cholesterol, sleep apnea, bone and joint problems, and chronic health conditions such as asthma and type 2 diabetes. Not to mention, overweight kids are more susceptible to being bullied at school, thus prompting depression and other mental health issues. Keep your kids active with exercise that doesn’t feel like it: dancing. There are a plethora of online dance tutorials ranging from mastering the Moon Walk, hip-hop, salsa, breakdancing, and club moves.
Get to Know STEM
STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and there’s a reason why everyone is talking about it — and not just because it penetrates every part of our lives. Science is everywhere in the world, and technology is continuously advancing. The STEM job market continues to grow by leaps and bounds, and many of these roles pay extremely well. With that in mind, it’s not a bad idea for your kids to dip their toes in this pond in case it’s something they want to be involved with in the future. There are a considerable amount of websites and apps geared toward kids who want to learn about STEM. Activities are tied to subject matters such as robotics, medicine, wind energy, molecular gastronomy, tech, computer coding, DNA structure, cloud computing, and anything else that falls under the STEM umbrella
Take a Virtual Vacation
Thanks to the internet, your kids can learn about other cultures by taking a virtual vacation. Instead of reading and looking at pictures, there are several travel-themed activities to make the experience more fun. For example, creating postcards and passports that kids can fill in with information about destinations they’d like to visit, filling a suitcase with objects that represent a country they’d like to learn about, learning how to read a real map, cultural-themed arts and crafts projects, preparing a meal (with your help), playing memory games with visual cues from around the world, learning about country-specific music and dances, and much more.
Good Old-Fashioned Family Bonding
There’s no reason why you can’t join your kids and enjoy activities as a family. Some ideas include bingo, charades, creating a family mission statement (goal setting), old-fashioned board games, crafts, indoor camping, cooking, and building a fort. It’s likely that your kids will remember this specific bonding time for years to come.
Cover image courtesy of Pixabay.