Fun Summer Learning – Indoor Games

Fun Summer Learning and Indoor Games

Choices

There are thousands of games to play – far too many to discuss here, although I will mention a few.  Don’t limit yourself! All games have at least a few teachable moments.

Note:  I used the name “indoor games” simply to contrast with “sports” which I am not writing about today.  Of course, you can play these games almost anywhere.  Also, most of the card games and board games are available as video versions, too.

Try to choose games your children will enjoy and then find ways to incorporate learning without limiting the “fun” element.  There is no need for “drills” (unless your children tend to like drills!).

Not all games have the same intellectual challenge, of course.  The games you play will be determined, in part at least, by your children’s age and/or current skill level.  Introduce new, different, or more challenging games as they mature.  There is no need to start with something complicated.  In fact, there are always times when we might enjoy playing something less challenging even when we do have the ability.Board_games,_card_games_are_all_fun_at_VSP_(7490672204)

Social

There are very useful lessons to learn around the actual playing of games.  For example, learning how to lose graciously.  This is not to be outdone by learning how to win graciously.  Take the time to each your children that game playing is not a personal judgement of value.  The real value is in connecting with others, having fun, and learning a few new things.  Having learned this with game playing, they might begin to understand how this works even in the academic world.  Your “results” are not “you.” (Ironically, taking that pressure off usually results in much higher marks.)

Patience and taking turns are obvious game-playing lessons.  Don’t underestimate the value of the social part of game playing.

Allow your children to teach you a few tricks.  One of the best ways to learn is to teach others.  Not only do we retain a lot more once we have taught another, but we will engage more and want to do even more. Hey, and you will be the cool parent who knows the “Easter egg”,” method, or shortcut.

Spending time together, talking, recounting stories, relating to other activities that may or may not be related to the game, all of these are important developmental and learning points.

Math

For math skills, games such as Cribbage or Monopoly are great choices.

Many card games have a math component – especially adding or patterning.  Crazy eights, Go Fish, Euchre, Uno.

Board games involve counting (sometimes adding), patterns, making logical decisions or choices, even spelling!  Scrabble, Snakes & Ladders, Trains, Chess, Checkers, Equate, Bingo, and lots more.

Math Games PBS KIDS

Cool Math Games

Reading

Reading directions to any game can be helpful.  You might even be surprised when your children read the directions to you.  I know many people who have been playing a game for years without realizing that they are not following the directions!  (Of course, it is up to you whether or not you prefer your version of the game.) Reading directions helps you learn how to play, but you can also check back from time to time to see if there are any additional plays or allowable moves that have not been tried.

Look for reading opportunities on blogs or sites that provide commentary, reviews, or approaches to playing.  These can be very interesting – not to mention helpful.

For younger children, there are lots of online games as well.  Here are some reading games from PBS.

Reading games PBS KIDS

Writing

Have your children start their own blog, writing reviews of games, telling stories of particularly great (or not so great) instances while playing. They can create rating lists,3470437230_8763467515_q include graphics, look for links or other material to incorporate.  In other words, they can practise a lot of the same academic skills required in school without feeling like they are in school!

Video Games

Video games have plenty of learning opportunities.  Many have story lines or the opportunity to create things like entire cities, farms, civilizations, etc.  You often get to create your own characters, too! Take some time to discuss all of the interesting artifacts, methods, and potential goals.

Many of the same learning opportunities mentioned above relate to video game playing, too. Reading about the game, writing about the game, practising math skills, etc.

I am definitely not a video games expert by any stretch of the imagination.  I have provide a link to some kids games that should do the trick, however.

Best Games for Kids

Above all, have fun!

Remember that learning is all about fun. It will enlarge your world.

If you want some help in this regard, please get in touch.Tutoring Central blog

Website: www.tutoringcentral.com

Video: Fun Summer Learning – Indoor Games

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Fun Summer Learning – Cooking!

First of all, you can have fun learning anything; however, cooking is a great way to learn many lessons.

Yes, he said, “cooking!”

Letting your children cook with you is a fantastic way to teach all kinds of lessons including reading, writing, and math – not to mention how to fend for themselves later in life. (Don’t underestimate the value of this.  Many adults eat fast food and poor diets because they never learned to boil an egg.)

Yes, boys should be in the kitchen, too.  I was a professional cook for fourteen years, so no problem.  baking-1951256_640

Reading

You can read recipes together either in books or online.  Looking for foods and recipes to try can be exciting for everyone.  Having a hand in the process is a great way to get children to try different foods.

As I mentioned with the reading recipe – ah, I mean reading blog done last time, (Fun Summer Learning – Read) you can share the reading in a variety of ways, depending on the child’s age and ability.

Writing

Copying recipes from the Internet, a magazine, or other source provides a way to practise printing or writing.  Using recipe cards and organizing them by meals and/or alphabetically offers more learning opportunities.  Your children can create their own personal binder or box of recipes.

You could start a blog of your own and have the children add photos and text, or they could each do a blog for themselves.  They could write about the recipe giving information about how easy (or difficult) it was to make.  They could write about the taste and the experience of making the meal, etc.  Children are naturally curious, but they also love to teach others, so this can be a gateway into expanding their horizons.

Math

Obviously, there are math lessons to be learned when cooking.  Your children can learn about measuring and weighing.  You can have fun adjusting a recipe.  For example, you might want only half the amount.  This gives you the opportunity to work on division and/or fractions. You might want to double or triple a recipe, so multiplication skills Measuring_Jarare practised.   There are lessons around temperature and timing as well.

Related concepts include learning to follow a sequence, following directions, and ordering steps logically.

Additionally, your children will learn to express themselves orally as you discuss food, recipes, how to follow the directions, and so on. This part of learning is just as important as the more recognizable reading, writing, and math skills.  Being able to express opinions, ask questions, and orally manipulate information will go a long way to helping them stay engaged and motivated to learn even more.

Mistakes

Yes!  Mistakes will be made.  Sometimes a recipe won’t work at all.  Sometimes the result is edible, but – “let’s not try that one again!”  Most of the time, the result won’t match the beautiful (often photo-shopped) picture. That’s fine.  You will have more successes than failures, and we learn a lot from mistakes.  Teach your children how to laugh, move past the errors, and use the mistake as a learning platform for the next attempt.

Have fun with it!  Remember learning should be enjoyable.

Look below for some affiliate links to beginner cooking courses!

Summer tutoring lessons are a great way to improve as well.  Let’s get started on the learning path together.

Website: www.tutoringcentral.com

Tutoring Central blog

Your Path to Learning!

This weeks video: Cooking!

 

 

 

 

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