If your household is anything like the rest of ours during lockdown – keeping sane while controlling the kids is a challenge. Boredom. No outlet for energy. Trouble sleeping. A recipe for rebellion!
Moving and learning go hand-in-hand so here are some great ways to burn off the kilojoules while exercising the brain!
Give your child a printed list of the alphabet, like so.
If you have one child, tell them that you are going to give them 30minutes (just over 1 minute per letter) to find an object in the house that starts with each letter and write it down. If there is a letter that they are struggling with, they can find two of another letter. Alternatively, they can miss a letter and do five burpees.
If they beat the clock – give them a reward (preferably not sweets… maybe let them off a chore for the day)
If you have more than one child, you could turn it in to a race and handicap the older child by making them find three objects for each vowel.
To make it more challenging for secondary students, why not let them use a translator and give them the challenge in Spanish or German…
Hide and Seek Story puzzle
Do an internet search for “short stories for kids/children/teenagers”. Alternatively, for shorter texts use a poem (kids love Roger McGough and Kens Nesbitt poems for kids). Roald Dahl, Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories, Grimm’s Fairy Stories, myths and legends are some sources you could use.
Print off the story, making sure to save the location of the original text as a key, and cut up the text into paragraphs or verses. Hide each paragraph or verse in a different location. Your child then needs to find all parts to the text and arrange them in the correct order. if you have used a poem, your child could memorize it and recite it the family.
Silent cinema scriptwriting activity
Select age appropriate video cartoon or short video (five to twenty minutes long) that is has no spoken words (such as Mr Bean or The Children’s Tree). I searched “children’s wordless cartoon” and a variety of videos came up. Aim to choose a video that has the same amount of characters as who will be able to act the play out.
Instruct the child to watch the short video and to invent the words that the characters are saying. They are to write them down in playscript form with character’s names on the left in italics and script on the right along with stage directions, like so:
Remind your child that plays happen in real time – in the moment, so what tense should they write in? Chiefly present tense.
Once the script is complete, your child takes on the role of director and allocates roles to other family members (including themselves) in order to perform their play.
Duplicating the script can be problematic if there is no scanner or printer… but if each person re-copies the script for themselves (or the child can write extra copies), it would be a great memorising activity for the play!
Ask your child to draw a map of the property. Before they draw the property, tell them that they are to measure the distance from each wall in steps and write down on the paper, how many steps long each wall is.
Once they have completed the map, use it to mark a X to show the approximate location where you have hidden a question (Geography questions tie in with the theme of orienteering). For age appropriate question ideas, do an internet search for kid’s quizzes – with answers!
Once your child has found all the questions, they can use whatever resources they like to find the answers. For each incorrect answer there is a burpee penalty and of course a reward for each correct answer.
Maths Big Bang
For this activity, you will need plain balloons, a felt tip and paper.
Fill up the balloons with a treat. Using the felt tip pen, write a mathematics problem on each balloon (dependent on the child’s age of course). You can find suitable sums and equations by doing an internet search for “Maths for Kids”.
On separate pieces of paper, write down the answers to each of the problems. Your child must select a balloon problem and pick out the correct answer from the pack of cards. Once they have selected the correct answer, they can pop the corresponding balloon problem.
String up the balloons just out of reach so that your child must jump in order to pop the balloon and win the reward.
If you want to extend the activity, instead of putting the reward into the balloon – write a clue to where you have hidden the reward on another piece of paper. Place that in the balloon so that your child then must go and find the reward before coming back to solve the next problem.
These are just a few of the entertaining activities that the gang at eKidz have come up with. Visit our website at: https://www.ekidz.eu/en/es/ForParents to follow our blog for more ideas or sign up for a great eKidz language learning trial for your child. Entertaining stories narrated Karaoke style, in Spanish and German for beginner learners – allowing them to learn vocabulary, learn correct pronunciation as well as reading in a foreign language.