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Fun activities to encourage learning through the Easter holidays

sunflowerThe Easter holidays are almost here and there are all sorts of activities you can do with your children at home, where they’ll not only have fun but also continue learning, using important skills they’ve already started working on at school.

Grow a Sunflower

Sunflowers are easy to look after and they grow quite quickly.  Young children will love watching them grow, week by week and seeing how tall the sunflower grows in comparison to themselves.  You could use a metre stick or tape measure to keep a weekly chart of its growth, or you could take photos of your child standing next to it to keep as a visual diary.

They can be grown indoors, in pots, from around the end of March, but don’t plant them outside too soon and when you do, watch out for slugs!  Your child can look after their sunflower and learn what it needs to help it grow.

If you’d like to grow something your child can keep indoors, you could make a grass-head person or monster, by putting a few scoops of grass seeds into an old sock, then filling it with compost and fastening the end with an elastic band.  Pop it into a yogurt pot, water regularly and your child will love watching the ‘hair’ grow!

Spring nature walk

Enjoy a nature walk in the Easter holidays, looking out for all the signs of spring, such as daffodils, blossom on trees and baby animals.  Talk about all the colours your child can see around them and how the season compares to autumn and winter.  You could even sit down and listen to see what sounds you can hear, such as bees buzzing, birds singing or rustling in the bushes.   Give your child a notepad and pencil for them to keep a record of all the things they see and hear, by writing or drawing pictures.  They could use this as inspiration for a diary entry or piece of creative writing, describing ‘What I Saw Today’.  This would be a good opportunity to practise using adjectives and similes to describe in detail what they saw.

Easter egg hunt

You could hide some eggs (either chocolate ones or cardboard cut-outs) in your garden, or even around the house if the weather is bad or you don’t have enough outdoor space.  It is a fun way for young children to practise their counting skills, by seeing how many eggs they can find, or if you wanted to give them an extra challenge, you could even have a simple maths question on each cardboard cut-out and for each correct answer they earn a small chocolate treat!

Baking

Let the kids help make some Easter treats and they will be practising their reading by following the recipe and their maths skills by weighing out the ingredients.  If you have young children, ask them to find the ingredients from the list, e.g. point out the word “flour” in the recipe and ask them to look at the ingredients on the worktop to see if they can match the word on the packaging.  ‘Birds nests’ with mini eggs are really simple for young children to make and they’ll  love eating them afterwards too!  With older children, supervise but let them read the method themselves and weigh out their own ingredients, only helping when they need it.  This might result in lots of mess but the children can learn that baking includes cleaning up after themselves too!

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