Parenting Tips on Home Learning |

How Parents Can Make Home Learning Fun

Discover how to add fun to learning at home and provide your kids with a head-start in the classroom

Posted on

11 April 2019

How Parents Can Make Home Learning Fun

All Credits: PA

Imagine if someone told you to sit still and read a boring book at the cinema. Or you had to sit at the kitchen and answer a maths workbook while a delicious basked pastry is calling you from the oven. For children, learning at home might feel that way - tempting distractions while you have a boring task to do, and listen to someone go on and on about a subject that you don't care about, can relate to, or find that it won't matter in your life.

Add electronics in that list of distractions, and it's difficult to get your little one to sit down and learn. But home learning doesn't have to be a hard task for both you and your child.

According to a poll from the UK Department for Education, 100,000 children under five years old have never done activities at home with their parents to boost their learning skills, such as reading, singing or playing games.

The study, which looked at nearly 2,700 parents of children aged five and below found almost a little over 30% of their children don’t read with someone at home every day.

UK Children and Families Minister Nadhim Zahawi said, "We want to create a generation of confident learners – and parents are a child’s first and best teacher, helping to get them talking and communicating before they reach the classroom.

“You don’t need expensive books or toys to help children develop literacy skills. It can be as simple as reading a library book together or making up your own stories – little interactions can have a huge impact," he added.

Every child learns differently, but a few simple strategies can make all the difference when it comes to sparking a child’s natural curiosity.

Here are some top tips for making learning at home a fun, engaging and positive experience, for both parents and kids, according to the experts.

Tip 1: Build A Creative Space

“Children love making things as it gives them a chance to be creative and resourceful. A ‘maker space’ is a great way for children to be creative,” says Graham Brown-Martin, chief education, and product officer at creative learning company pi-top.

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Creating an Art Learning Corner I’ve honestly been procrastinating for the longest time on setting up an art learning corner for T. The idea of paint and other art materials potentially spilling everywhere in the house is kind of freaking out the OCD in me . But I truly believe in taking cues from the child when it comes to playing and learning, and T has recently taken such a huge interest in drawing and coloring that I feel like it’s time we encourage and support his free expression of creativity. • So we spent our Saturday hauling some really awesome stuff from IKEA (yes that white Raskog trolley!) to set up his art learning corner. I really really love what we had done! T hasn’t seen it yet and I’m sooo excited to show it to him. It’s also perfect timing - it’s 3 weeks to the EDD of his little sis, so we’ll probably stay home a lot more these few weeks and it will be great to do some artwork with him! • The art cart fits perfectly next to his writing table (swipe left for last photo). Here’s what we have on the art cart! In the hanging containers: colored pencils , crayons , markers. Top tier: paper, stickers, dot stickers, dot markers, stamp markers, scissors glue. Middle tier: scoops and tongs, tons of loose materials! Low tier: paint, paint palette , brushes and sponges, paint containers. What do you have in your art learning corner?! Tell me, I would love to know! : 3 years 5 months

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Parents are recommended to separate an area in the house that children can use whenever they want whenever they feel creative. You can fill these areas with a variety of materials so kids can craft and build different things. It's a great way to let them explore and think out of the box.

Tip 2: Use Technology Wisely, Not Ban It

“The jobs of the future are yet to be created, but what is clear is that they will be integrated with tech, so it is important for children to be around creative technology from a young age,” says Brown-Martin.

“I’m not saying they should be on their phones all day every day staring at a screen, but technology can be used to enhance learning experiences.”

“By giving children a product that allows them to both choose what they want to make and work out how to make these products, using code and programming, we are ensuring that children are actually thinking and being creative and imaginative,” adds Brown-Martin.

Games like the Fisher Price Code-A-Pillar (£54.99/AED 264) teaches children as young as 5 years old and below about coding. The toy breaks into nine easy-to-connect segments that kids can arrange and rearrange to tell the toy how to move forward, left, right, wiggle, dance or even wait a couple of seconds before starting again.

Tip 3: Create Homemade Games

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Easy peasy Spring colour matching activity

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The ‘fish hook’ game is a good example of fun learning – simply use a stick and string, attach a small paper clip, cut out some fish, and attach rubber bands.

"Write various topics, letters, numbers or whatever else you’re trying to teach onto the fish and get fishing for the right answers with your kids.

Tip 4: Make the Outdoors Your Classroom

“At school or nursery, children are inside for the majority of the time. So in contrast, your garden, for example, will offer lots of opportunities for children to learn,” says Brown-Martin.

“You could give them a patch to manage – that could be by planting seeds and growing plants – this incorporates science but also teaches them responsibility because they will have to look after and water their plants every day.

“Children are naturally inquisitive and will look around and ask you questions. Getting them learning in a different environment to their nursery is hugely beneficial – being in the fresh air is also an added benefit!”

Tip 5: Let Children Take Control of Learning

“Children are naturally curious and it’s likely that they will already have an idea of what they want to do,” says Brown-Martin. “Exploring is a natural activity and when children trust themselves, they develop self-confidence.