Miss Beatrix Potter Hen

Miss Beatrix Potter Hen
Miss Bea posing for Mama!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Smiling Summertime Scholars-FUN Activities That Educate!

It's summertime, summertime, sum, sum, summertime, summerti,i,i,i ime! As children, we soooo look forward to this fabulous freedom-filled season! As adults, for some of us, me included, summer is just a hot, sometimes sticky humid, buggy extravaganza that I would just as well skip and jump right into the crisp cool autumn! As longtime homeschoolers, we chose to make it count by whiling away the hours with a good book, watching a classic movie, or writing summer themed journal entries all the while remaining cool as cucumbers in our climate controlled family room!
Oh, we did take some time off! We all need rest and the freedom to refresh ourselves as our creator God knew when He gave us the gracious and lovely gift of the sabbath day! Since we completed our school year during the first week of May, we were officially on vacation until after the Fourth of July celebration! So we reveled  in the joy of  this new found freedom and slept in, hung out in our jammies, ate ice cream for lunch, and just chilled!
Anyway, I would like to share some FUN yet educational activities with all you moms-at-home, homeschoolers, and anyone really who would like to spend some great quality time with your children this summer while they learn a little something along the way!
These are all very simple, "have all the ingredients at the ready" so to speak, activities that not only entertain and engage, but educate as well!

*Create your own wacky "Family Libs"!
* Write a "Co-op" story (short for cooperative story)-the CrAzIeR the better! Each family member gets a different color pen to write with and you just take turns adding a sentence! Who knew writing could be such fun!
* Have an incredibly irresistible indoor picnic and chill out afterwards by playing this CrAzY indoor snowball game...set out some pots and bowls of varying sizes at one end of your family room and label them with point amounts, the larger targets having the smallest point values and the hard to hit smaller targets having large point values! Be forewarned though, this game can and will get a bit rowdy and boisterous and you may even find yourself becoming a target of your dear sweet cherubic children! This makes a great mathematics enrichment activity during the summer months!
* Spend the summer months learning about another country and it's culture! We used to have a large bulletin board on our dining room wall where I would put up either a hand drawn or purchased map along with bits and pieces about that country's culture! We would learn some basic phrases and common words of the language, prepare foods specific to that country, read about it's customs and traditions, watch an historic fiction movie or documentary about the country and even decorate our mini spruce tree with the type of Christmas decorations that would be found on holiday trees in that country. 
* Create the Ultimate! This is a fantastically creative activity which allows your children's unique personality shine! Create the Ultimate vacation, tree house, bedroom, etc. using any medium or combination of materials. For example, your child could build his or her Ultimate Bedroom in a discarded shoe box like a diorama, video tape a home movie of siblings enjoying the Ultimate Vacation, write jingles advertising the Ultimate Resort, paint masterpieces reflective of the place where they would travel to for the Ultimate Vacation...Oh, the possibilities are endless! And, the learning, well, the learning will abound and you may notice your children gaining inspiration from each other and the simple joy of learning will overflow!
* Have a Fitness Fiesta, indoors where it's cool to be fit! Hold indoor potato sack races using older pillow cases! Have a Madcap Marching Marathon-march and clap, march double time, march and tap your knees, march and whistle a catchy tune, march and play the ABC game (choose a theme and take turns naming an item from that theme beginning with each letter of the alphabet), march around the house and up and down the stairs, etc, etc. Once again, the possibilities are only limited by your family's imagination. Oh, and take turns being the Marching Master!
* Learn a new skill- we actually bought one of those How to Juggle Klutz Kits and had a "ball" learning how to juggle! We also learned how to waltz, how to maneuver ourselves into various basic yoga poses each of us donning our version of  appropriate "Yoga Wear", and learned how to perfect the perfect homemade playdoh recipe by adding scent-sational scents with powdered jello mixes! Be wary though of wee ones if you have them, because the scent may be just too tempting not to take a bite as my son did many years ago and made such a face (homemade playdoh is VERY salty) that his story is told far and wide!
* Have a Winter Wonderland celebration and revel in COOLNESS! Donning your slippery-est socks, ice skate around the kitchen while Winter Wonderland plays in the background, have a Marshmallow Snowball Fight, drink milkshakes with dinner, hang up homemade coffee filter snowflakes, read about places with Chilly Climates, build Ingenious Igloos with sugar cubes and/or marshmallows and homemade vanilla butter-cream frosting! 
* For all of your budding young scientists, make homemade ice cream, butter, whipped cream, etc. There are a wealth of  books chock full of excellent experiments at your local library or right at your fingertips through google!

Anyway, the point is to share in the learning experience together and make it Fun, Fun, Fun!!! Your children may even discover a new passion, skill, or talent in the process!

So,get ready, get set, go...learning and laughing all the way! Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray, three cheers for summertime scholars!!!


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