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10 Fun Ways to Trick Your Kids into Learning at Home

Working Mother logo Working Mother 4/24/2020 Quinn Fish

School is out, but you can keep your little ones sharp with these enjoyable educational activities.

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Keep your kids busy with these fun learning activities.

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As the coronavirus pandemic leaves parents responsible for homeschooling our kids while working from home, we could use all the help we can get.

Whether your children are restless or you just need some activities to distract them so you can try to get some work done, these educational activities are parent-approved and will surely keep your kiddos learning without them even knowing it.

1. “Start a family book club. Make a weekly goal of sitting down together to discuss one everyone can read. Let each family member take a turn picking a book.”

—Becky Ward, education experience specialist, Tutor Doctor

2. “Encourage your child to keep a diary and write about her daily activities. It’s a great way to keep her practicing her writing skills.”

—Senida Kiehl, founder, Excellence in Expat Education

3. “Have everyone in the family create their own vision board depicting what they want to accomplish over the summer, such as the number of books they’re planning to read or vocabulary words they’re going to master. Then gather together at the end to see who met their goals. With the right sense of humor, it can be as entertaining as setting them.”

—Avivit Ben-Aharon, founder and clinical director, Great Speech Inc.

4. “My children and I listen to at least one classic audiobook together. Whether it’s while they’re playing or while we’re sitting together to listen, there are many opportunities throughout the summer to catch the benefits from hearing a well-written book read aloud.”

—Timarie Friesen, writer

5. “Create a scrapbook with your children. They’ll work on penmanship, grammar, drawing and coloring, and build their fine motor and organizational skills.”

—Len Saunders, author, spokesperson, elementary school teacher

6. “We go on ‘eye spy’ treasure hunts in the neighborhood, where we ask our son to spot things that are different colors, or to spot things that there are four of.”

—Nina Kaiser, Ph.D., Founder, PRACTICE San Francisco, a yoga and mindfulness studio

7. “Make your kid sous chef and show them how to make their favorite treat. This kitchen science adventure is a great lesson in measuring, ingredients, creativity, problem-solving and chemistry.”

—Allison Wilson, senior director of curriculum and innovation, Stratford School

8. “My second-grader was working on nouns, adjectives and verbs, so we turned it into a game of MadLibs. Every answer was about poop or farts, but he was much more engaged and willing to do it.”

—Leigh Ellen Watts Magness, child and adolescent therapist

9. “Create a math problem scavenger hunt. Come up with a list of items that kids need to find around the house, but every item includes a math problem. For young kids, it could be 3+2 markers or 8-3 crayons. For older kids it could be 12/2 pencils or 3x2 Lego bricks.”

—Mikaela Walker, Managing Editor, Orlando Parents Family Fun Magazine

10. “Research the best fruits, vegetables and flowers that grow in your region and work with your little one to plant a garden. Keep a journal about the process, and have him share it with his new classmates in the fall.”

—Michelle Person, former teacher, founder, Just Like Me Books

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