14 family fun activities for 2014
#1. New Year’s Eve provides an authentic reason to begin the process of learning to tell time. Start at noon New Year’s Eve asking your child for a countdown to 2014. Ask what time it is and how many hours are left until the New Year. Throughout the evening your child reports first hours until midnight, then minutes, and last seconds counting down until you ring in the your New Year.
#2. Celebrate the New Year outdoors. Use your new coats, hats and mittens by sledding, skiing or snowboarding. Building snow sculptures, snowmobile, cross-country skiing and ice fishing waits for families. Ice-skating, Sleigh Rides, Dog sleds even snowshoeing provides outside fun.
#3. New Year’s Eve in the kitchen. As a family cook something from another country for an international learning experience! Invite your child to help to plan the meal or pick recipes, make a list of ingredients, find them in your kitchen, and/or shop for them, as well as cooking.
#4. New Year’s walk. Bundle everyone up and let your children help decide hiking trail and destination. Lead the way in being excited about new discoveries-tracks in the snow, birds’ nests revealed. Invent games to play – find signs of winter.
#5. New Year’s ice cream party treats for children to make. Homemade ice-cream. Ice-cream sundaes, floats and cakes with warm chocolate cookies.
#6. New Year’s Eve card and dice games. Card and dice games help build the strong foundation and mental strength to tackle deeper math concepts. It is the concrete mathematical experiences that are the foundation for more abstract thinking-as well as a lot of fun.
#7. New Year’s Eve board game night. Play games board games, and thinking games are fun alternatives for the entire family.
#8. New Year’s Eve can foster development in strategy and probability skills, look for board games and computer games, including Connect Four, Scrabble, Monopoly and The Game of Life. Blokus board game and/or computer games.
#9. New Year’s Eve family science night with science kits, rockets, rocks, chemistry sets and telescopes help develop critical thinking skills.
#10. New Year’s Eve Project-based fun with toys such as model airplanes, cars, ships, bead or jewelry kits to help improve fine motor skills.
#11. New Year’s building party. Clear a big space and provide Lego and building kits with directions. Or just create towers.
#12. New Year’s puzzle night. Pick a few puzzles for the family to put together. Start at one and build for 30 minutes…move to the next one as a family…then the next. If as a family you want to keep going on one great as long as it is fun keep going.
#13. New Year’s books. As a family sip hot chocolate and read a new story.
#14. Buy the Kindle book Learning at home by Rhonda Cratty for $4.48. It is filled with ideas to help children become the best they can be. This Kindle e-book can be purchased through Amazon.com for daily fun activities that make subjects become more than pencil and paper, moving into the authentic way of everyday life. 48, four per month, educational learning ideas that can happen anytime. From the first days in January, in the backyard in the spring, on summer vacation, everyday within the comfort of family. Each idea can work with multiple ages and needs within a family. Tucked in are lists of family friendly books subjects, recipes, and games to extend learning.