For kids with learning difficulties, the school holidays are often a time for them to relax and not have to think about school work. In itself this is a good thing, we all need time to rest and recharge. But the downside of this is that there can be a regression in academic skills from the end of one year to the start of the next.
So how can we help kids maintain their progress whilst still having fun? Below are a handful of activities that kids can engage with over the holidays to help them keep using and practising their academic skills.
- Keep a holiday diary: this helps to improve handwriting skills and work on written expression
- Write Christmas cards/thank you notes: again this is a great way to engage kids in handwriting practice and thoughtful writing
- Wrap presents: helps with fine motor skills
- Watch documentaries: there are thousands of free documentaries available at https://documentaryheaven.com/ Watch one together and then ask your child some questions about the content that helps them display their knowledge
- Learn something new: set a goal to learn a new skill such as cooking, drawing, etc. This will help to stimulate a variety of learning skills
- Visit a museum (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_museums_in_Melbourne) or Scienceworks https://museumsvictoria.com.au/scienceworks/ This is a great way to spend a day during the holidays, and can help to engage kids in topics they are interested in
- Create a family tree: This helps with fine motor skills, linear thinking, and you might even learn something interesting
- Try geocaching: the modern form of treasure hunting is a fabulous activity that gets kids outdoors and learning about using technology and following directions
- Visit the library: Many local libraries run holiday reading programs, or if not just let them pick out books that interest them
- Build a cubby house or fix something around the house: this helps with planning, fine motor skills, visual spatial/constructions skills
- Learn a board game that requires strategy and forward thinking such as Chess or Backgammon
There are lots of ways to help kids keep learning and progressing over school holidays. Try to adapt their areas of interest as a way for them to engage in different activities, and remember to keep it fun!