The Christmas period is a potential goldmine of knowledge, games and activities to keep young minds engaged and interested. Whether homeschooled or in the public system, your children can use the holidays to learn more about key subjects and reviews topics they are covering. This article offers a number of fun ideas that can enable you to share the joy of Christmas whilst enriching their understanding of the world in which they live.
1. Share the History of Christmas
As you go through the Christmas holidays you can bring up interesting facts. Explain the origins of different events and aspects of Christmas. For instance, did you know that Christmas Trees first appeared in Sixteenth Century Germany? In order to keep your children engaged pair each new item of information with a fun activity. For instance, you can try making a simple timeline out of paper. This can show the different Christmas traditions throughout the ages. Invite your children to imagine: how was Christmas different in different times? What toys would the children have played with? This can help your children to develop an appreciation of the different lifestyles enjoyed during different ages and bring ancient and modern history to life.
2. Teach Your Children Geography
Your children can also learn more about the current world around them through Christmas. Try introducing different countries and learning about how Christmas is celebrated in exotic, far-off places. For instance, in Jamaica they celebrate Christmas with a street parade called John Canoe. Try sharing the cuisines of those places and even making Christmas decorations in regional styles together. With a little creativity it is possible to re-create different environments and give your children a taste of life in other parts of the world.
3. Learn Math through Christmas
It is even possible to cover math concepts during Christmas. How about singing the Twelve Days of Christmas? You can use songs such as these to teach subtraction, addition and, depending on the age of your children more advanced concepts such as multiplication. You can use chocolate coins to practice calculating different amounts. Your children are sure to remember these activities fondly and cherish the times you spend together. Although the learning element need not be intensive, the activities should be inclusive and enable all the children to play a meaningful role.
4. Feed Your Children’s Creativity
There are many ways in which you can share the joy of Christmas through the curiosity and adventure that comes from learning about the world. For instance, you can finger paint a Christmas tree or make paper chains together. Where possible, use paints and crayons to illustrate concepts and make it fun and involving for the children. By harnessing your children’s creativity and curiosity you can enable them to discover further knowledge for themselves. Furthermore, by creating something as you learn your children can have a souvenir which they can later use to reinforce their learning.
5. Remember Christmas as a Family
Rather than re-creating the classroom, try and involve your children’s creativity and ask them to illustrate different events and the items that you cover during the holidays. Trying out these ideas together can help you to share a warm and memorable Christmas together. It can also enrich your Christmas experience and help you to enjoy special moments whilst broadening the horizons of your family. The gift of knowledge is, after all, a gift that lasts a lifetime.
How do you usually help your kids learn during Christmas? Share your tips please!