Having an environment to encourage learning in my children has been a passion of mine for many years. Kids’ minds are amazing and I love seeing their minds do amazing things when I provided simple resources and activities.
My Favorite Ways to Encourage Learning:
- Have books in the home – Reading to children can be one of the most enjoyable experiences. Cuddling up with a book and a child is priceless. When you have lots of books around and children see you reading, they are much more likely to want to read books too. As you read you can talk with your children about what you are reading and encourage a good attitude towards learning.
- Provide a variety of papers and writing utensils – I have found that when fun pencils and markers, along with various types of paper were available, my children used them and wrote more. Drawing is also penmanship so if your child doesn’t write much but likes to draw, they are still developing their eye-hand coordination and learning how to write.
- Have puzzles and games available – Children learn SO much from doing puzzles and playing games. They are fun and they learn valuable thinking skills too. Some of our favorite games include Othello, Guess Who, Jenga, Mexican Train (dominoes), Chess and many others. This will help limit TV viewing and probably make your child feel even more fulfilled in life.
More Ways for Kids to Learn
- Encourage projects – If your child likes taking things apart, collect broken small appliances and let them take them apart. If your child likes sewing by hand, encourage them to work with fabric and thread and make whatever their heart desires. Some children like playing with Legos or doing projects with their parents that they are working on. Listen to your children and encourage them in taking on projects that interest them. Let your child know that you are their biggest fan and that you believe in them. Feel free to involve extended family in the projects. They will enjoy sharing their interests and passions with your children.
- Take them to interesting places – You don’t have to plan elaborate field trips to Washington DC or Williamsburg. Even a trip behind the scenes at the post office or bakery or a nature walk can make an impact on your child. Stop at constructions sites and let them watch how things are constructed. Plays, sporting events, dances and ethnic activities are great, but don’t overlook the little things happening around you that can encourage your children in their learning.
I hope all these ideas have sparked something in you that will help encourage learning in your children. Enjoy the time you have with them and watch their little minds grow and develop into amazing adults.