The world is going through a health crisis, and schools are closed. As a parent, you have also now taken on the role of teachers. It’s not easy work, and many parents have been worrying about how missing school would affect their children’s development.
While you might not be a math whiz, there are some things you can do with your children that are not only fun but also educational.
Write and Illustrate a Children’s Book
Kids are natural storytellers. Their imagination is limitless. Their curiosity is boundless, and there’s no stopping their chattering once they learn how to talk. You can cultivate these traits by letting them write and illustrate their own children’s books.
You can prompt them with questions or scenarios and just let their imagination run wild. If you have scrap paper lying around, you can use those as pages of a book by binding them together. You can teach two things with this method: recycling and arts and crafts.
Turn Back the Time with Tie Dye
If you were a child of the 70s and the 80s, then you must have had at least one tie-dyed shirt in your closet. While the trend never really died down, recent fashion trends have seen an uptick in people’s interests in tie-dyed items. It’s an easy enough project that you can do with kids as young as five years old. Just be sure to use non-toxic dye.
There are many dye kits available online. Carefully check the ingredients and the reviews to make sure that they are safe for children. At home, the only things you’ll need are items to dye (shirts, socks, towels or pillowcases, for example), as well as some rubber bands, gloves, and plastic bags. The tie-dye kit should have all the instructions you need.
Encourage sensory play among your kids by making your own slime. YouTube is filled with how-to videos on how to make this, and most of it uses simple ingredients you most likely already have at home. If you want to get all nerdy about it, you can even use this as a lesson on polymers and molecules.
Similarly, you can also make your own Play-Doh. All you need are pantry staples: flour, salt, cream of tartar, vegetable oil, food coloring, and some water. You will also need a small plastic bag. Mix all the dry ingredients and add the water and oil while “cooking” it over medium heat until it turns into a ball.
Place the ball of dough inside the bag and knead it until it becomes pliable. Kneading the dough while it is inside the plastic bag ensures that you don’t stain your hands. And there you go! You’ve got homemade Play-Doh.
Build a Treehouse
Lastly, while you are in quarantine, try to build a treehouse for the kids. It’s great that you’re spending a lot of time with the family, but everybody needs their space too. Sure, you can retreat to your own rooms, but why not give the children their own space? A treehouse will be perfect for this.
First things first, pick a tree in your backyard that is strong enough to hold the number of kids in your home. Once that’s done, create a layout and design of the treehouse. Let your kids be part of this process as well and incorporate as many of their suggestions as you can.
Next, check your local DIY center to see what kind of wood they have on hand. You will also want to look for some premium wood glue for sale. Wood glue is a safer alternative to using nails, and really good ones could make your treehouse last for years.
Finally, whatever you decide to do, don’t forget to include your children in actually building it. Not only is this an excellent way to bond with them, but it will also help them see the value of working hard.