Ten (plus 1!) simple things you can do at home with your child to assist learning
At Northlands Wood we believe that keeping things simple is often the best approach. As we experience these times of uncertainty, we wanted to share ten things which you can do with your child to help further develop their learning, in the widest sense. Whatever your child’s age, there will be things on this list which you can tap into. As and when we move into further changes, we will share more learning opportunities with you, but this is a starting place.
1. Watch this video with your family about the importance of cleaning hands properly using soap.
2. Ensure your child is confident in Telling the Time. This is something which all children will be at different stages with, but regular discussions throughout the day around ‘time’ and playing games such as ‘What’s the time Mr. Wolf’ will aid this. It is never too early to learn to tell the time, especially with this being such an important life skill.
3. Play board games. Mr Sears is an avid Board Gamer with a growing collection of games which develop strategic thinking and cooperation/collaboration. Take time to play games as a family, particularly those which involves rolling dice and adding numbers together, or those which require turn taking which is a key life skill. This also promotes higher level reading skills and gives children an opportunity to read for a real purpose. It is amazing what reading children demonstrate when they need to in order to progress in a game, be it in real life or online!
4. Have a jigsaw ongoing. Spending time as a group working together to complete a puzzle brings enjoyment and engagement, as well as a huge shared reward when it is completed. We have a puzzle in progress in our school Staff Room which aligns with our approach to Mental Health Well-being and how staff work in collaboration.
5. With a common sense approach to what is possible and sensible, work on some of the items listed on our ’30 things to do before leaving NWPA’.
This list is on our School website and was compiled by staff in order to give children a varied and rich time at Primary School. There are many elements on here which you can do with your child, even in the current climate.
6. Write letters or postcards to your child’s Class Teacher. The staff here always love receiving post (send to the school address) and they would delight in knowing what you are upto at home and the learning you are undertaking and what you are improving in.
7. Times tables are incredibly important and underpin the vast majority of Maths which we engage with at school and in life. Make sure that you know all of your times tables and the corresponding division facts. We cannot emphasise enough what difference this makes, both to accuracy of answers and speed of calculation, but more importantly to the confidence it brings to the subject. There are lots of ways in which Times Tables can be practised, including using TT RockStars (which children have logins for), activities on MyMaths (logins provided for KS2, with Y2 receiving theirs shortly), as well as more traditional means outlined on this website below.
8. Practise touch typing on a keyboard. We believe this is an essential skill for our children, particularly as they move through the school and into Secondary when there is a higher expectation for them to type at speed to publish their writing. A few websites which help with this:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/topics/zf2f9j6/articles/z3c6tfr (Dance Mat Typing)
9. Read. Read. Read. We cannot emphasise highly enough the importance of children continually developing their reading knowledge and ability. Even if you feel your child can ‘read’, it is still vital that you are reading with them and alongside them, taking the time to question them around their understanding and assisting them in making predictions about what might happen next. They might want to keep a reading log or journal based on what they have read, be it physical texts or online books. How are you getting on with the ‘100 books to read’? Whilst you are away from school, take the opportunity to work through the list with any books you have access to. Our staff ‘experts’ will be looking forward to hearing all about your reading when you return.
10. Play. This might be playing games, creating things out of Lego/construction materials, crafting, junk modelling…anything which gives your child the chance to make choices in what they do and how they represent themselves is important to their development. We are real advocates of ‘play’ in school and continually promote this.
11. *A sneaky additional #11 from Mr Humphrey and the P.E. team!
Try the ‘Bring Sally Up Challenge’
Try the ‘Bring Sally Up Squat Challenge’
Baby Shark challenge
Just Dance sessions -
We hope this list has been useful as you continue thinking about ways to support your child’s learning and knowing what sorts of things to do if your child is off school, for whatever reason.