Learning can be a chore for kids, but studying doesn’t have to be boring or monotonous. As a parent, it’s natural to want your children to make the most of their education and get ahead, but how do you balance studying with downtime and having fun? If you’re looking for ideas, this guide has some fantastic tips to make learning as enjoyable as possible.
Include practical activities
Many of us have fond memories of being in the classroom that don’t involve reading books or taking down notes from a board. The most memorable classes often involve experiences and practical activities. Think about doing weird and wacky experiments in science class or making maps in geography tutorials, for example. Practical learning is often more accessible to students because it provides clarity and context and it makes retaining information easier. Doing something with your hands or seeing it with your eyes usually aids understanding, especially with complex subjects or concepts.
To make learning more fun at home, try to vary activities and include practical tasks and games as well as reading, using textbooks and listening to lectures or presentations. Tailor the activity to the theme or subject. If you have young children and they’re learning about trees or animals, for example, why not go on a walk in the forest or visit a farm or wildlife park? If you have older kids learning about capital cities or different countries, use globes and maps to plan games.
Make use of tech
Our children have grown up in a world where technology plays an influential role in learning and education. Lots of kids respond positively to online resources and learning platforms and apps. If your kids enjoy using tech, use this to your advantage. You can access all kinds of resources from online games and activities to practice tests and exams to help your children to learn independently or with you by their side to help. You can have fun as a family and facilitate learning and development through fun games that are designed to cover specific subjects or tackle problems. From math equations to volcanic eruptions and chemical reactions, there are apps, programs, games and quizzes for all ages.
Play educational games
Play is one of the main ways that children learn. From the first few months, babies learn through engaging with their parents and other people and playing with toys. Educational games and activities that have a fun element are a brilliant way to help your kids stay motivated and encourage them to engage and concentrate. Adapt games your kids used to love when they were younger, get ideas from teachers at school and other parents, and explore resources to look for fun, exciting materials. You can play online, buy board games, download and print addition worksheets that are based on games and quizzes, or join forces with your children to make up new games based on their favorite subjects or topics they’re covering at school.
Explore different environments
The environment around us can influence our mood, our concentration levels and the way we process and retain information. Sometimes, it’s much easier to learn in certain places. It can also be more fun to discover new environments. If your kids find it hard to concentrate at home, they get distracted easily, or they’ve lost interest in a topic, why not get out and about and explore new settings? You could visit a park, the beach or a lake, go to a museum or a zoo, meander around an art gallery or read books at the library, for example. A change of scenery can lift energy levels and make the learning experience more exciting and accessible.
Studying at any age can be challenging. To boost productivity and aid retention and concentration, it’s really important to take breaks. Long periods of learning can impact focus and reduce productivity. If your children are revising for exams, or they’re doing homework, try to break longer activities or tasks down and plan sessions with breaks between. Use breaks to relax, recharge the batteries and get some fresh air.
Turn popular activities into learning exercises
One excellent way to make learning more fun for children is to turn popular activities into educational exercises. Take inspiration from your child’s favorite hobbies and games. From dancing and painting to baking and playing sports, you can turn any activity into an opportunity to learn. Cook and bake together to learn about numbers and measurements. Dance, play soccer or tennis, or go for a walk or a bike ride to learn about the muscles and joints or how physical activity benefits the body. Take an art class or go to a gallery to learn about famous painters or artistic styles.
If you’re looking for ideas for activities to try with your children based on popular games or interests, and you’re struggling for inspiration, search online. You can also swap ideas and get suggestions on parenting forums and social media groups.
Add a visual element
The human brain processes visual data, such as images, up to 60,000 times faster than text. Many of us find it easier to learn by looking at pictures or watching videos rather than reading long paragraphs of text. If you’re on a mission to make studying fun and help your kids to learn, add a visual element. Try drawing, painting or taking photographs, or use picture books or worksheets that feature images to break information down and make it more digestible. For older kids, flow charts, infographics and graphs can make complex ideas easier to understand.
Studying can be challenging for kids of all ages. If you encourage educational activities or ask children to do their homework, you may be greeted with objections or an eye roll. As a parent, it’s natural to want to support your child and urge them to learn. Making studying fun is a great way to engage with kids, help them to learn and boost motivation. Include practical, creative activities, turn activities they love into learning exercises, discover new environments and take regular breaks. Play games together, add a visual element and take advantage of technology.