This time of year is magical for children and adults alike. To help you make this holiday season fun for your kiddos, we have some holiday themed activities that are not only festive but educational as well! Here are 5 ways that you can easily incorporate educational learning into their holiday fun.
1) Get Them Crafting & Creating
Paper snowflakes are always fun for children and this craft can be a great way for your child to explore symmetry and hexagonal natural geometry. If your children are of appropriate age, you can introduce them to 3-D snowflake design making, which is more advanced, but makes for a great math lesson. You can find all kinds of helpful tutorials on YouTube. Once the kids have finished their snowflakes, they can then use their snowflakes to decorate the house!
Another fun holiday craft is to make snow globes. This craft will really allow your child to use their imagination to create a wintery wonderland scene that they can keep at their bedside table. You can find all kinds of snow globe "how-to’s" and inspiration on Pinterest and other sites.
2) Problem Solve With Holiday Math Games
Help your child exercise their math skills by creating holiday themed math problems for them to solve. This an example:
The lighted tree at your house has 5 strings of lights. Your family leaves it on from 5pm to 10pm.
- How much electricity does it use in one day?
- The tree is up from Dec 1st to Jan 1st. How much electricity has it used?
- List three strategies to conserve electricity during the holidays.
Once they've solved the problems you can reward them by baking some holiday cookies together! Which leads us into baking -- a great way to teach math skills to children. Baking teaches kids about math and precision through measuring and weighing ingredients. It’s an excellent way to introduce fractions and help them practice their counting! Plus, the end result is a delicious treat!
3) Do Some Christmas Chemistry
On that note, cooking can also be a great way to introduce your children to chemistry. You can do a chemistry experiment with Borax and create crystallized snowflakes. This activity is especially fun for children who don't live in an areas where is snows, as they'll be making "snow" in their own home! Simply look up "Borax Crystal Ornaments" to see the exact ingredients and instructions required. Like the paper snowflake craft, these crystalized snowflake ornaments can be used to decorate the Christmas tree!
4) Learn About The Winter Solstice
Help your child learn about the solstice and how the earth moves with a fun earth science lesson. Explain that the amount of sunlight is determined by the relative position of Earth and the sun. Create a bulletin board display showing Earth and the sun. Each day, change Earth's position and tilt and ask your kids to identify the season in various parts of the world.
Of course, this year the winter solstice is also the same day that the “Great Conjunction of 2020,” also known as the "Christmas Star," will occur. This rare astrological event hasn’t occurred since 1623 and will be a great way to teach your kids about how the planets work. It will be a once in a lifetime sight to see so, be sure to read our blog about how & when to see this event on the 21st.
5) Read Books About Winter & Snow
Help your child learn about the weather and how the seasons work with a little story time. There's nothing quite like cozying up with your little one and reading some books together on a cold snowy afternoon. Encourage their curiosity about the winter weather by asking them questions that help them learn the key concepts in the book.
Some Books Ideas Include:
- The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
- Owl Moon by Jane Yolen
- The Snowman by Raymond Briggs
- Winter Wonderland (National Geographic Kids) by Jill Esbaum
- The Story of Snow: The Science of Winter’s Wonder by Jon Nelson Ph.D. and Mark Cassino
- Curious About Snow (Smithsonian) by Gina Shaw
Share The Fun
We hope this blog gives you some inspiration for holiday activities that you can do with your children. We know it can be hard to get the kids away from the screen, which is why these fun & festive educational activities will be a great way to keep them entertained this holiday season. Be sure to send us a photo on social media of you and your child doing some of these holiday activities and we will feature you on our story! Happy holidays to all!