Schools out for the foreseeable and lets face it, most of us are scared to death of the concept of entertaining our children for potentially months on end.
Not only that, with job losses and scaled back working we’re living in fear of paying our bills never mind paying for extra resources, food and entertainment for our own children.
So here are 9 fun ideas that you can recreate at home. All are free and can be used as part of your adventure into home schooling.
Collect leaves, sticks and petals on a nature walk or around the garden and create some nature art for friends or family.
We created some ties for our Dad’s for Father’s day last year and used some hole punches to create nature confetti.
Go Find It
We absolutely love our go find it cards and generally having a good hunt around the house or garden for interesting objects. The concept is simple but provides hours of fun.
The cards show a huge selection of criteria that the player has to ‘go find’ and as the cards can be used infinity the game is different every time.
You can purchase the go find it cards here
Or how about creating your own version to reduce the cost. Maybe this could be a project for a school child to show creativity, understanding and maths concepts.
Lining Paper Painting
Children love to draw and paint and whether done indoors or outdoors there is nothing a child likes more than getting creative on a grand scale.
Lining paper is really cheap and can easily be picked up from a local diy shop. Or if you can’t get there have you got an old roll of wall paper in the back of a cupboard you could use and draw on the reverse side?
We used this together to create an eclectic mix of drawing styles last summer. It was a brilliant group activity with a topic idea to work from. Most children will of started this terms school topic, could this be used as inspiration for a home learning task?
What is it with kids and water? They are drawn to it like little fish.
Introduce maths concepts with the use of containers and water. Filling, pouring and manipulating water can lead children to ideas and by simply raiding your kitchen cupboards all manner of vessels can be found to use in the play.
You can use jugs to measure volumes, fill different pots and pans and bang them to hear the tons they make, see how many cups it takes to fill a bigger pan.
If you have older children they could create tally charts to keep track of totals or keep a list of sizes and quantities. Maths can be learnt in such practical fun ways. We just need to talk the children threw what they are learning whilst they play.
Kids love bugs, FACT!
So why not feed their curiosity with a home made bug hunting Kit? I simply cut out cardboard discs and drew the bugs onto them and made a bug hunting menu. You can keep the discs separate or attach them to figures you already have, I attached ours onto our nins.
This activity is perfect for children to learn about the natural world, maths and science. You could talk about the similarities and differences between the appearance of the bugs, their habitat, colour and even create tally charts to see which bugs are the most common in your garden.
Our mud kitchen is one of the most played with areas of our garden. Loved by all the children and often a hub of activity.
You don’t need to spend lots of money on a purpose built wooden kitchen to be able to create a mud pie making haven, I use an old sink we dug up in the garden sat ontop of an old coffee table. Some pots and pans from the back of the kitchen cupboards and you are all set.
My children collect leaves and flowers to make into flower soup or sometimes i add play sand into this area. one of our favourite things to do is to add loose parts. I think we all have a stash of shells or pebbles in our homes, natural treasures collected on a long past day out.
It is important to let your children play snd explore, they will learn do much by being able to do!
One of the best additions to my garden last year was our outdoor painting easel. I sourced a pallet (from a neighbours skip) added some giant bulldog clips that cost about £10 from amazon and the job was a goodun.
We are all guilty of over thinking and overspending at times on items that are purpose built when we can actually create our own play spaces and new equipment quickly, cheaply and cost affectively.
Being able to express themselves in a variety of ways is essential for the development of a healthy young mind.
Another fabulous science activity is planting and growing your own I sense is going to feature in many a household this year as we are forced indoors and need to find ways of keeping ourselves busy.
I would suggest starting with easy growers such as beans, peas and courgettes. You don’t need to have a greenhouse, a windowsill will do but be sure to keep potting on before eventually planing into the raised planter or vegetable patch.
Last year we used a tape measure to record the final highs or lengths of our vegetables. This also teaches children the importance of caring for living things, science and maths. We will be starting our seeds growing this week.
This one is focused on childs mental health. We are living in difficult and unprecedented times. We ourselves are worried, sad, scared and all manner of emotions. Don’t forget that our children are feeling this aswell.
Children feed off our emotions and will be finding all the changes thrown at them difficult and unsettling. We like to use magic buttons. I draw a heart on their hands so they can give it a press when they feel anxious or just want a hug.
Whilst you maybe with your kids at home they will be apart from other loved ones so might find this idea of some comfort.
I hope you have found all these ideas helpful and easy to replicate at home. Remember we are all in this together.
Stay home and keep everyone safe.