M.S. asks from Salina, KS on May 15, 2008
Summer Brain Work
I am a nanny to two girls, 10 and 11. Their mom likes them to keep their minds working over the summer, and typically they do reading and math workbooks during the summers to keep their brains going. This summer, their mom has agreed that we/they could work on something different as long as it advocated learning...I need ideas!!!!! The workbooks ae like pulling teeth!
So What Happened?™
Thanks for all of the responses. I've come up with a pretty feasible summer calendar for us that includes many of the activities you all have suggested. I really appreciate the help!
B.K. answers from Kansas City on May 20, 2008
You could try doing some cooking lessons with
the girls thats using math. You could do some craft
projects to give to someone who doesn't get out
much. The Library some times have different things
in the summer time to do.
H.H. answers from Kansas City on May 16, 2008
learning games on the computer are great. try this website for math www.aaamath.com . The jumpstart learning games are really great and has games for all subjects that are fun. My kids loved those. I think they only go up to the 6th grade though. Play scrabble for spelling. www.zone.com has a lot of games for puzzle type and word games that are single player. These are just a few ideas. Hope that helps.
K.G. answers from St. Louis on May 16, 2008
These ideas are all really fantasitic!
My husband and I learn differently, so maybe throw something in that keeps their brain active, but in a different way... Cooking (have them change the quantities to double a recipe or halve a recipe)... Drawing (sit outside on a nice day or inside on a rainy day and draw still life... a plant, a shoe, a rock, etc, talk about shadow, light, color)... Music (summer music programs would be great, especially drumming, where it is easy to see a large improvement relatively quickly)...Dance (use different muscles and need muscle memory and brain memory to do the dances correctly)
P.F. answers from Wichita on May 16, 2008
Dominoes are a great way of practicing math skills without kids knowing it. There are numerous other educational games that can be ordered or purchased (Rainbow Resource is a great place and an economical homeschool supply store. www.rainbowresource.com)
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J.M. answers from Topeka on May 17, 2008
Hi M.- What a super job you have! I just wanted to suggest helping the girls to learn to do something with their hands - weaving, knitting, pottery, basket weaving, calligraphy, music. This is for the right half of the brain, which is so understimulated in our culture. The right brain is brain, too! If you don't know of something to teach, perhaps there are classes nearby. My town has city-sponsored pottery and calligraphy classes. You could add the left-brain component by having them learn more about the art - its history, what other kind of materials have been used, what is the chemistry, for example, of pottery when it bakes in an oven.
I also liked the suggestion of taking the girls out into nature. It doesn't have to be a remote place - a city park has lots going on in it, especially if there's water. Have them write a love letter to something in nature - a small thing can work very well. Have them really look at the thing and think about what it does - find admiration and gratitude for it. Then have them roll up the letter, tie it with a bit of cotton string or ribbon, and hang it in a tree in an out of the way spot. Good luck, and have a great summer!
1 mom found this helpful
R.D. answers from Kansas City on May 18, 2008
L.B. answers from St. Joseph on May 16, 2008
Another thing that I would suggest would be field trips...have them learn about the artists at the Nelson Atkins Art Museum, or more about the Animals in the zoo and where they come from. Take them to Hallmark and learn how cards are made. Take them to the marble factory in Bonner Springs and learn how marbles are made. At Ft. Leavenworth their is a free museum that you can learn about how the installation came into being, see original carriages and some byplanes from the era, and the buffulo soldiers museum (one of only 2 all black calvary units in the US Military). Perhaps sign them up for horseback riding and have them learn about horses, how to care for them, etc. With the Olympics coming up there is a whole myrad of things you can do from learning different sports to playing geography games and keeping track of who is winning the medals. You could always have them study up on architecture and take them along the Paseo to see all the beautiful water fountains and drive downtown to see the different styles of skyscrapers. There is the Independence Library where they can learn about Harry S. Truman, the web site even has a TON of stuff for students/teachers to do and there is an additional exihibit there this summer about Lincoln, the Constitution, and the Civil War. There are always things like Liberty Memorial (about WWI) and the Union Station (which still has the bullet holes in the building from Al Capone shooting at police officers). All of these things can lead to a wealth of more information at the library...just make them naturally inquisitive. What are they interested in? And head in that direction.
Personally, I like to think outside the box...my mom made me do those XXX worksheets and I HATED them. They never did anything practical for me in the real world...much better to get them thinking on their own, why people chose professions, how do things work, why do we do/have this, etc?
M.B. answers from Kansas City on May 18, 2008
Your local library should have a summer reading program the girls could participate in, which usually provides some social time as well. Cooking projects are a fun way to put their math skills to the test, measuring, doubling recipes, etc...
S.H. answers from Springfield on May 18, 2008
Somthing that I am trying with my 7 and 15 yr olds are we are going to learn to cook my husband works alot of hours and we are alone at night . HE and his mom bake all kinds of cakes wedding and birthday ect. so the kids and I are going to learn how to cook .The first thing is a dish from around the world. It a where you make something from from all over .. Next is to let each one pick a place anywhere and once they have got there picks then they can pick to do a desert or a drink or a dinner ..
I hope this gives you something to think about. I think it will be lots of fun .
C.A. answers from St. Louis on May 16, 2008
So many things...........look at different types of jobs and have them find out information on them. Then do a collage or write a paper. Do a book club with some other kids in the neighborhood or see if there is one at your local library or book store. Look up different states and find things to do there plan a "fake trip" make an list of things to do with driving directions and hotel stops. How many hours it might take to get there by plane, train, or car. Rent a car, figure a budget. Learn a new art form. Call and find out about classes at the art museum. Go to the History Museum or local children's museum and take pictures and talk about the different things you learned or expand on certain parts of these adventures into a different kind of learning experience. More fun than a workbook......hope some of this helps.
L.B. answers from St. Louis on May 16, 2008
What about some computer games. My kids missed using them. But my nephews love them and their smarter than whips.
I hope they don't have to do this all day long.