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Keep Students Bright With Holiday Learning

Parent and child baking holiday treats, while wearing festive outfits.

‘Tis the season for holiday celebrations and making new memories! 

This time of year also comes with school and work shutdowns to allow students and their families to spend time together. However, whenever long gaps without active learning occur, students have a higher chance of experiencing learning loss. 

If learning momentum is neglected through the holiday break, students might find themselves struggling once school starts again in January. 

HOW TO KEEP LEARNING SKILLS STRONG THIS HOLIDAY SEASON

We understand that many kids don’t want to work on school assignments during their holiday break. However, it’s important to remember that learning doesn’t always mean completing schoolwork. The holiday break is the perfect chance for your child to have uninterrupted hours to explore what interests them and create autonomy with their learning! Self-directed learning is a great way to boost learning motivation in and outside the classroom. 

HOLIDAY LEARNING WON’T FEEL LIKE WORK!

Our 12 Days of Holiday Learning is a great way to “sleigh” learning loss this holiday season while keeping kids engaged and having fun! Try these tips:

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 1: KEEP CURIOSITY ALIVE

Educational websites are an excellent resource for keeping students engaged, and the best part is, there are thousands to use! We narrowed it down to a few for you:

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 2: STRENGTHEN SCIENCE SKILLS 

Hands-on activities are a huge hit with kids, and science is the perfect subject to see how scientific method gets put into practice. You can learn how to execute the following experiments through a quick Google search. Don’t be afraid to get messy for the sake of learning!

  • Arctic Animals
  • Walking On Eggshells
  • Nails for Breakfast
  • Baby Diaper Secret
  • Colour Changing Milk

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 3: DEMONSTRATE EVERYDAY USES FOR MATH

Baking during the holiday season is a popular activity, so we encourage you to get the kids involved! Measuring, quantities, and fractions help children understand math’s practical purposes in everyday life. Once students see the practical use, they’re more inclined to understand it!

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 4: LET YOUR CHILD BE THE TOUR GUIDE

The uncertainty of COVID-19 and its restrictions make it challenging to travel. Be a tourist in your own city! Over the winter break, have kids select a local landmark or historic site and research it, from how to get there to its history. Assign them as the tour guide to show your family what they’ve learned!

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 5: DOWNLOAD A LANGUAGE APP

Learning a language can be tricky, which is why it’s important to keep language skills strong over the break. Apps such as Duolingo and Little Pim are great for kids! Add a sense of competition through challenges and milestones to keep students interested.

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 6: PRACTISE WRITING

In a world full of electronic keyboards, handwriting skills are declining. Encourage writing practice by penning a letter to Santa, sending holiday Christmas cards to the Canadian Armed Forces and long-term care facilities, or writing in a journal!

Writing has a lot of health benefits for kids–from providing stress relief to helping to sort through thoughts. The extra time during the holiday break is perfect for perfecting the habit.

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 7:  BE ACTIVE

Take advantage of the holiday weather and go on a family hike! Before you go, have your child interpret the weather by looking at the temperature or precipitation. Once you’re outside, get moving! Have a snowball fight, build a snow fort or go sledding on a big hill! 

Physical activity helps increase blood flow to the brain, improving overall cognitive function tremendously.

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 8: BUILD READING SKILLS

Start a new tradition by purchasing a holiday storybook to read with your family! Reading is essential for academic success, so working on the skill over the holiday will be beneficial. Books allow children to connect with their imaginations and relieve stress! It’s also a fantastic way to build a more extensive vocabulary and work on decoding new words.

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 9: TUNE INTO HOLIDAY MUSIC

You can’t have a holiday season without the classic jingles! Thankfully, we have access to so many versions of the songs from various artists. Have an impromptu music lesson by creating a holiday music playlist that includes past and present music. Make it more interesting and test the student to see if they can guess who the singer is!

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 10: GET CRAFTING

Creating a family history Christmas tree is a fun way to combine history and a fun art project! 

Holiday celebration rituals offer a great opportunity for students to explore their family history. Keep it holiday-themed by encouraging your child to figure out where and how older generations spent their respective holidays!

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 11: PLAY A BOARD GAME

Fun for the whole family and a great way to disconnect from electronics! Playing board games can help kids develop critical thinking skills like strategy, analysis, and planning. Different games can encourage learning in various subjects. For example, playing Monopoly could help your child learn the concept of money and purchases!

HOLIDAY LEARNING TIP 12: FOLLOW A ROUTINE

The holiday break doesn’t mean you have to throw out your daily routine. In fact, by maintaining your daily routine, your child will transition better when it’s time for class in January. Routines reduce the unexpected, and when children know what to expect, they perform better at school and home. It allows them to feel in control of their daily tasks and activities. Feeling like they’re in charge of their day not only makes them feel accomplished but boosts their confidence too!

Learning enrichment during the holiday season will prevent precious time from playing “catchup” and make the rest of the 2021-2022 school year a bit easier! Find more learning enrichment tips here.

From all of us at Oxford Learning, we wish you a safe and joyful holiday season!

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