6 Ways to Connect with Your Child
Families are always looking for ways to connect with their child’s learning which can bolster their development. Being able to understand and follow directions is important at home and at school. Here are a few tips to connect with your child and expand their minds at the same time.
- While driving home or waiting in line, play a game that enables your child to display his direction-following skills. Use a variety of positional words (over, behind, under, above, in front of) and say something like, “Put your hands above your head,” “Move your hands behind your back,” “Put one finger on your nose!” When your drive is over, ask your child to give you directions to follow! These simple games help to develop your child’s language and communication skills.
- Invite your child to practice their counting/number identification skills as she plays a fun number “guessing game” with you. To play, tell your child that you are thinking of a number and that you need her help to determine what that number is (based on the clues you are providing). For example, “I am thinking of a number. If I count, 6, 7, 8, what number is next?” To increase the difficulty of this activity, give clues such as, “I am thinking of the number that comes after the number 4,” or “I am thinking of the number that comes before the number 9.” These games help develop mathematical skills for comparing quantities.
- For older children, a parent or other adult can think of a number between 1 and 100. The children then ask math-related, yes or no questions such as, “Is your number odd? Is it a multiple of 5? Is it greater than 50? Etc.” to figure out your number. Feel free to give them a paper and pen so they can keep track
- Ask your child to share what he has learned about scientific tools in the classroom. Can he name a few that he had the opportunity to use? What did he do? How did the tools help him explore and what did he learn while using them. Then invite your child to think about items you have around your home. Can he think of any that might be used in a scientific manner? What might he explore? What would he hope to learn? Encourage your child to gather some of these items and tools and use them to explore things in a scientific manner. Ask him to share his observations and findings.
- Come up with a topic and ask your child to tell you a story about that topic. A parent could say, “tell me a story about a boy who picked an apple from a tree.” This allows the child to use their imagination to create a story that could go in any direction. Then expand on the story by adding, “and the boy had a sister and a dog.” You can continue this on and on while your child weaves various scenarios for the scenes you are setting. If you happen to have paper and crayons with you, you can then ask the child to draw a picture of their story.
- One player starts the game by humming a well-known song. The first person to guess the tune correctly gets to be the next “hummer”. It sounds super simple, but it’s often trickier than it seems!
Stepping Stone School provides families with free memberships in ABCmouse. Most families have tablets and ABCmouse can be downloaded to be used by our children at home. Taking the tablet with ABCmouse in the car can help stimulate your child’s mind, provide learning opportunities and hopefully prevent the questions all parents dread, “when will we be there?”