The holiday season offers many opportunities for family time — preparing special dinners, getting together with relatives and even travelling. Research by Professor Jaak Panksepp, a world-leading neuroscientist who was from Washington State University, shows that family holidays and activities can advance brain development in children.
While it's great to give your child a break from schoolwork over the holidays, you don't want your child to forget what he or she has learnt throughout the year. In fact, the arrival of the holidays doesn’t mean that learning has to stop — it just means that there's time to expand on your child’s learning and to reinforce the skills he or she has developed.
Recommended Holiday Activities For Your Child
From family trips to museum visits, reading new books or trying out fun experiments at home, the school holidays are all about discovering different ways to get your child excited about learning while still having a fun time.
Here are 6 fun ideas to keep your child engaged during the December holidays!
For Nursery and Kindergarten Learners
1. Bring Your Child Outdoors
Young children love playing outside and there are numerous benefits of engaging in outdoor play: it allows them to explore their environment, develop muscle strength and coordination as well as gain self-confidence.
From exploring high-element obstacle courses to farm visits, here’s a list of the best places for kids in Singapore to check out this December!
2. Engage Your Child in Storytelling Sessions at Home
Instead of just giving your child a book to read, try reading stories aloud to your child instead. Storytelling is a fun way to get your child interested in reading — you can even make it more engaging by getting him or her to read some lines with you. When reading becomes an inclusive activity where your child can also participate in telling, guessing and manipulating the story, it creates a fun and enjoyable learning experience for your child.
Research by Dominic Massaro, a professor emeritus in psychology at the University of California, Santa Cruz found that reading aloud is the best way to help children develop word mastery and grammatical understanding. Massaro, who studies language acquisition and literacy, also mentioned that although parents can build their children’s vocabularies by talking to them, reading to them is more effective.
For Primary 1 to 3 Learners
3. Get Messy in the Kitchen
There are many ways to build your child’s Math skills — it can even happen right in your own kitchen! Cooking and baking are great opportunities to use multiplication and fractions, especially if you are cutting a recipe by half or doubling it.
Point out fractions as you and your child read through the recipe for the family’s Christmas log cake. If you have a kitchen scale, you can even let your child help you measure and prepare the dry ingredients. When your child is involved and engaged, learning becomes fun!
3. Boost Reading during the Year-End Holidays
The benefits of reading are limitless — it fuels your child’s imagination and introduces new ideas and experiences to your young reader.
Encourage your child to spend some time engrossed in the pages of a book (or 10!) by visiting the library. Let your child choose the topics he or she would like to read about and watch your child's love for reading blossom.
For Primary 4 to 6 Learners
5. Explore a Different Side of Singapore
Take your child on a historical journey and 'transport' him or her back in time to the 1960s with a trip to Pulau Ubin, an island that is home to Singapore’s last villages or kampongs.
Don't miss out on letting your child explore the Chek Jawa Wetlands — it's the perfect place for him or her to learn about ecosystems and observe how different species can coexist within a small area.
6. Conduct DIY Experiments
Science doesn’t have to be boring for your child! There are many DIY experiments available online that you and your child can try out at home.
While conducting the experiment, you may want to let your child take the lead — as he or she takes you through the steps of an experiment, your child will have to recall and reinforce the Science concepts that he or she has learnt. You can even ask your child some questions about the experiment to test his or her understanding of the topic.
Find out how you and your child can make your very own lemon battery with our downloadable guide below. This is one of the exciting, hands-on activities our TLL students get to try out in class!
Sign Your Child up For Holiday Programmes At TLL
School's out, but our workshops are a great way to liven up your child’s holidays! At The Learning Lab, we’ve prepared an exciting line-up of programmes to give your child an enjoyable yet enriching time this December break.
Let your child explore the Science behind magic with our Amazing World of Science programmes, hone speaking and presentation skills in our Communicating with Confidence programme, or even learn to code during our Coding Workshops!
Whether you are looking to boost your child’s academic prowess with our GEP Excellence classes or just want your child to have a fun time picking up new skills, we have prepared a full range of special programmes over the holidays for your child.
The Learning Lab is now at 8 locations. Find a location that suits your needs.