The heat. The anticipation. The lack of concentration. It can only mean one thing: Summer is coming. Three months is a long time in between school sessions. Long enough for kid’s brains to turn to mush. Parents might be wondering how to keep their kids’ minds busy and active during the summer break. Fortunately, there are several ways to keep kids moving and learning until school starts again.
Curiosity Stream is the Netflix of the non-fiction, educational genre. Subscriptions start at $2.99 per month for users to have access to thousands of educational videos. Topics range from astronomy, history, technology, and beyond.
TED Talks offers short talks from speakers all over the world. Topics focus on technology, science, and humanity. The fact that most talks are around 30 minutes or less makes it easy for children to sit through until the end before they get antsy to get back outside to play.
Search YouTube to learn about whatever comes to mind. Encourage kids to search for a topic on YouTube that they are excited and interested in. When they are done, ask them questions about what they learned. Children can also record what they learn in a journal and write down questions and new topics to research.
Subscription boxes are a fun and surprising way to help children learn about all kinds of different things. Kiwicrate inspires budding scientists, artists, and makers to create all sorts of wonderful things. Little Passports is for younger kids. Their goal is to “inspire kids to learn about the world.” Or, take a look at Kidstir, they deliver a box filled with tools and recipes to teach kids how to cook and bake. There is a subscription box out there for virtually every interest.
Create an action movie with Stopmotion Explosion. Stopmotion Explosion kits come with everything children need to create their own stop-motion animation film. It includes a webcam, instructional guide, and video tutorials. With this kit, children can create videos using their own Lego sets, figurines, or Play-Doh. Pop some popcorn and plan a homemade movie night.
Get in the kitchen with Great British Chefs Kids. This app offers 105 recipes specifically designed to encourage children to participate in the preparation and making of meals. Recipes range from tea time treats to main dishes. The app also includes how-to videos that show how to do advanced cooking and baking techniques.
Search for hidden treasures with Geocaching. Geocaching is a worldwide treasure hunt. Geocachers from all over the world have hidden things on hiking trails, under bridges, in alleys, and wherever there’s a crack or crevice. The whole family can join in on the fun by signing up for a free account and downloading the app. With the app, users can find nearby geocache locations.
Learn about all things science with Home Science Tools. Home Science Tools has kits and supplies for chemistry, biology, Earth sciences, physics, and engineering. Children can learn about the microscopic world of cells or discover the theories and formulas that make up our entire world.
The Headspace app encourages meditation and improves mindfulness. It’s a great way for the whole family to practice meditation. There are several mindfulness series for different areas of life, including sports, work, and sleep. Headspace also has a section for kids to help them in many areas including staying calm, focusing, and sleeping.
Summer is coming, but that’s no reason for children’s bodies and brains to shut off. Watch, make and do a few of these tech-inspired things to help keep them active. And, don’t forget, chores a perfect chance for kids to prioritize responsibility this summer!
Sara Woodard-Ortiz, owner of The HeartFull Journey, is an ally for heartbroken moms who are going through separation and divorce. Her goal is to help moms love themselves during and after divorce as a way to build a foundation to attract a new, satisfying relationship. Sara lives in Danville, IL with her daughter, Olivia, and their cats, Bianca and Katniss. When Sara is not working on her business, you can find her playing Minecraft or drinking coffee at a local cafè.