Fun Activities that Don’t seem like Learning for Kids but are

Some fun activities for children are just that…fun activities. Other activities you can do with your child can sneak learning in with your child not even knowing it.

 Cooking is a Great way to get Children to use Math and more while having Fun

Cooking is something you can do with your children. Yes, it might make a bit of a mess, but it is a great opportunity for your kids to use their brains in a different way. What can children learn while cooking with you?

 Mother and daughter in kitchen together

  • -Math and counting skills  – while measuring, fractions and volume
  • -Following instructions – such as a recipe
  • -Creativity – extrapolating from a recipe that you know, and making a few changes to make it more interesting. With some recipes, you can change some things, but not others – especially in baking – where exact measurements are crucial
  • -Decision-making – how to put together a meal, what main dish, sides, and desserts. Or how to get out your tools and ingredients first, then get cooking.
  • -Knowing how to cook simple items can help you child build confidence in their abilities but make sure they stick with simple things, and are not doing too much unsupervised in the kitchen.

 

There are many sites on the internet and books about cooking with children to help you get started.

 

Gardening is another great way to Engage Children in Learning

Gardening, especially vegetable gardening is both physical and mental. If you involve your child from the very beginning and walk them through the decisions you have to make, that is a big head start on learning. What skills would your child gain by gardening with you?

 A family gardening together

  • -Decision-making and problem-solving – where to place your garden in your yard, or where to expand your garden, (this can even be done on a small scale in a sunny apartment window). What vegetables to choose – based on what the family likes and the sun, soil and moisture you have in your yard. Also, what hardiness zone you are in (what plants will grow in various parts of the country.)
  • -Veggie gardening also helps kids connect with where the food on our table comes from. I remember my young nephew liking French fries, but not believing that baked or mashed potatoes were from the same vegetable.
  • -Gardening is also a lesson in setting and achieving a goal: taking steps along the way, from planting to watering, to harvesting…and in managing expectations – not everything we grow will make it to the table.

 

Again, there are many sites on the internet and books about gardening to give you tips and ideas.

 

Playing Video Games in Moderation has more Benefits than you Think

 

Many parents have a love-hate relationship with video games, on the computer, with game consoles on the TV, tablets and smartphones. They can entertain your child, but often it is hard to pull them away. Yes, we need balance, but the next time you child wants to play a digital game, ask them to teach you how to play and then take turns. Or find a game that you can play together, or one that has two players so you can play at the same time. Some games are created to be educational as well as entertaining. Of course, make sure that the games are age-appropriate for your child before you jump in. But you’d be surprised at how much the brain has to work at some games – even those that are not “educational.”

 

  • -Have them teach you how to play the game. It can give the self-confidence, and by teaching they have to think through what they do.
  • -Educational games make help them learn or use math or vocabulary words or other school-based skills
  • -Problem solving – most games have rules – kids have to figure out a strategy how to play and how to make progress in a game. Usually each level adds new twists, and decisions, to the game.
  • -Decision-making and consequences – many games have interactions and choices that have an effect on the next steps in a game. Doing something questionable, often has negative consequences.
  • -Imagination – kids think about games even when they are not playing. Just like you imagine in a book and what will happen next.
  • -Reading – yes reading! Many games incorporate reading – to learn the rules of the game at least. But often kids get motivated by games like Minecraft to learn more about how to do or build more things in the game. They may ask you to help them get onto the internet and research game guides. Studies have shown that often these game guides are at a reading level higher than they normally read, but they are motivated to read and look up words and concepts so they can play better.
  • -Cooperation – some games are single player, some are cooperative, some are competitive. Each game type can teach kids lessons about these things. But even solo games can help kids make friends…other kids who play the same game.
  • -Even playing board games with your children can help them learn some of the same things.

 

So try involving your children in gardening, cooking and games and let us know the results. What tips do you have for getting your kids involved in these tasks, or when have you seen your children learning, when they didn’t even realize it?

Snowy or Rainy-Day Indoor Activities for Kids when it’s just Bad Weather Outside

When the weather outside is just too wet or too cold for extended outdoor play, you might start to run out of ideas to keep your kids entertained. Here are some ideas from a couple of Children’s activities blog that can keep your kids busy indoors. Click on the links below for some great ideas. Create an indoor obstacle course - If your kids have tons of energy, but it’s miserable outside – try this activity – it can keep kids involved for hours. As you design the course, take into account the ages and abilities of the kids who are participating. Blind … Continue reading

FILED UNDER: Blog, Child Development, Family, Learning through play

TAGGED WITH: , ,

All Work and No Play

“Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.” -  Fred Rogers It’s common for parents to wonder how our kids are having a much tougher time of it, and how much more of a fun and carefree time we had as children. While trying to enrich our kids’ lives with extra-curricular activities we shouldn’t forget the importance of play! Here’s why playing and the outdoors should be an important part of kids lives’: Reduces stress: Playing an outdoor game and … Continue reading

FILED UNDER: About ALOHA, Blog, Family, Health, Learning through play, Parenting, School

TAGGED WITH: ,

Seven Ways to Keep Your Kids Brain Fit

Mind Over Body Exercising your body is one thing and your mind is another. It’s important that your kid’s brain gets a good workout, so that it can function at an optimal level. In this blog, you’ll be able to pick up a few ways that you can keep your kid’s brain healthy. Kids of the age group five to 12 tend to be very active and alert; you can use their hyperactivity as an advantage to keep their minds in good shape.   The Steps to a Fit Brain Here are seven ways you can try to keep your … Continue reading

FILED UNDER: Blog, Child Development, Learning through play, Math for kids, News, News & Events, Parenting, Reading

TAGGED WITH: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

E-activities This Summer

Don’t Say No To Gadgets In our last post, we spoke about developing curiosity in children, this week we’re covering applications for popular platforms that will keep kids minds active during the holidays. The summer holidays are a time for children to put their books aside and forget the classroom. iPads, gaming consoles and late night TV are picked over study material and textbooks, but just because kids are glued to their gadgets doesn’t mean they can’t benefit from them. Five Apps That Kids Can Benefit From Here are a few apps and games that will help teach children over … Continue reading

FILED UNDER: Blog, Learning through play, Learning with apps, Learning with technology

TAGGED WITH: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

TIMEXTABLES January 2013 – Did you check out our new website?

Timextables is our monthly newsletter celebrating Arithmetic, Math and Knowledge. This edition has has some great educational app recommendations and information about the upcoming ALOHA Math Olympiad. Check out the pdf version at http://alohamindmath.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Aloha-Newsletter-Jan-2013.pdf Check out our website for further details about our after-school learning programs www.alohamindmath.com  

FILED UNDER: About ALOHA, Blog, Child Development, Learning through play, Learning with autism, Learning with technology, Math for kids, News, News & Events, Parenting, Reading, School, Timextables, Writing

TAGGED WITH: , , , , , , ,

Activity based fun with Math – Aloha Mind Math

Tomato

Here is a great post on fun activities for kids. It is so great to be able to have some activity based fun with kids, and if you can add math to the picture, it can have some added advantage of helping them with the subject too. Here are some great activities that can help connect kids to math by making it fun for them: Puzzles: Math based puzzles are a great way to ignite your child’s curiosity, and you can easily make or find ones that are appropriate for kids of all ages. This can also be a great indoor activity for … Continue reading

FILED UNDER: Blog, Learning through play, Math for kids, Parenting

TAGGED WITH: , , , , , , ,

How important is it for children to have an early start to learning?

learning

Have you heard about kids listening to music even when in the womb? This blog article makes a strong point about how important it is to pay attention to what children are learning in their pre-school years. Here are some reasons to help them get a head start on early childhood development: It’s never too early: As soon as babies start being aware of the world around them, they are beginning to take in information. Though it is too early to start off on those math operations, it is the right time for exposure to other stimulants like music. A … Continue reading

FILED UNDER: Blog, Child Development, Learning through play

TAGGED WITH: , , , , ,

Top 5 Back to School Tips

Going to School

It could the first day of school, ever, for your kindergartener, or the first day of middle school for your older child. It even simply can be the first day of a new grade after a long summer break, all of these can be a cause for concern for children as well as parents. Here are some useful back to school tips for parents and children: Timing is everything: Starting at least a week before school actually starts, start playing pretend with your child so that you both get out of the summer timings and start getting used to getting … Continue reading

FILED UNDER: Blog, Child Development, Learning through play, Reading, Writing

TAGGED WITH: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

How to Help Improve Your Child’s Concentration

Do you feel as though your child is not paying enough attention at school or while doing homework? Conditions like ADHD in kids are a big concern for parents, especially when kids have problems focusing on their work. While this may be a possibility in a few cases, a lot of the time it is because of changes that occur as they are grow up and have more things to think about, as well as varying attention spans. Here are some simple ways to try to improve our child’s concentration at home: Basic needs: Make sure that all basic needs … Continue reading

FILED UNDER: Blog, Child Development, Learning through play, Learning with technology, Math for kids, Reading, Writing

TAGGED WITH: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,