As a parent, there are plenty of times when you wonder if you are doing everything right for your kids. Are you teaching them enough? Are you giving them a happy life? All of these worries are totally normal, but they also shouldn’t worry you too much. If you are thinking about these things then you are likely doing a lot of good for your kids.
When it comes to teaching them and having fun, one great way to ease your worries is to try and combine the two. You want to educate your child as best you can, but you don’t want them to be bored or resistant to learning. Here are eight great ways to boost your child’s learning whilst also having fun at the same time.
As your child develops their reading and writing skills, you will often wonder if you can do anything to help boost their learning. Words and phrases start to become easily recognizable, but maybe sometimes your child has a problem with spelling these words out. That’s normal – and remember, every child develops at a different speed.
One of the best ways to challenge them with their writing and reading skills is to play with simple anagrams. As the team over at unscramble.org shows, there are easy ways to find, create, or solve anagrams online, making it easy for you to help to set these tasks. Go for simple words that your child already understands and write them out jumbled up. Then, help your child discover the correct spelling within the anagram using phonetics. You’re certain to have some giggles along the way as funny anagrams and sounds pop up.
Words in the Sand
Another fun word game to help learn to spell is words in the sand. What kind of kid doesn’t like a sandbox?! Write some simple words on cards or paper and hand them one at a time to your child. Then, ask your child to use all their fun sandbox toys to rewrite the same word in the sand. This way, spelling will slowly become cemented in their mind while they also get to have loads of fun with their favorite toys. If you’re looking for a way to incorporate learning words and having fun, this has to be up there.
The classics are there for all to remember; “B – I – N – G – O and bingo was his name!” being one classic example. You may recall songs like this from your own childhood and guess what? You remember all of the words. That’s because combining songs with learning works wonders.
As with the example above, it is most easily applied to spelling or wordplay-based lyrics. These songs can help cement spellings, catchphrases, or words into a child’s mind for life. You can even come up with your own for particularly challenging or interesting words – just make sure they’re catchy!
Another fun way of helping kids remember words and phrases is through rhyming. Finding rhymes for words can be challenging for children, but it helps them to learn word suffixes and sounds much quicker than they might otherwise. Try using “ing” words, for example, to help them learn about verbs.
Picking random words or objects and asking a child to find a fun rhyme is great for creative thinking too. This helps a child dive into their word bank and try and search their brain for rhymes. This sort of thinking can help them be lateral and creative thinkers as they grow up.
Away from words, simple sets like Lego and Meccano can help children develop a basic understanding of concepts such as engineering or construction. With pre-designed sets, children can learn how to build simple buildings or copies of automobiles. This may seem simple, but developing an understanding of mechanics with something like Meccano can spark a child’s imagination and encourage far deeper learning on the subject. Even building a Lego house helps them understand simple structures and foundations.
Collecting and Playing Toy Ships
Pay and Play
At some point, you want to help to educate your child on money and how the world works. This is, of course, an extremely wide topic and arguably one that isn’t taught to children enough. In their early years, the concept of capitalism might be a bit far-fetched, but you can certainly help them learn numbers with games revolving around shopping or paying for things.
Your children have likely watched you pay for things in a shop. To help them learn basic number skills, put fake shopping labels on items in your home and let your children pretend to be a shopkeeper. “Buy” items from them, but only if they can add the prices up correctly. Maths and fun at the same time, who would’ve thought it?
For even younger kids, simple counting games can help develop their number skills. You can combine this with learning primary colors by creating a colorful counting game. Try a selection of colored cards, marbles, or even cereals, and ask your child for 12 red items, for example. They will have fun finding which items are red and hopefully learn to quickly count to 12!
Focus On Interests
Finally, trying to focus on things that genuinely interest your child is a great way to help them have fun whilst learning. Your kid may have suddenly developed a huge interest in cars, dolls, or toy soldiers. They may be fascinated by bugs and insects – unluckily. Whatever it is they love, try and incorporate this into some of these learning games. Ask them to find 12 green soldiers, for example, and then play with them. Or, try to find rhyming names for their favorite doll. You get the idea – combining their favorite things with learning is a great way to educate and enjoy at the same time.
These games and ideas will help you cement words, phrases, numbers, and more into your child’s brain through fun methods. So, you’ll have no more worry that you are not helping your child learn at home, while also knowing you’re keeping them entertained. What more could you want?