Winters are a hit or miss for many kids. Some find it boring, and others find it the best time of the year.
Did you know there are a ton of fun activities you can do only during the winter break? Better yet, these activities are STEM-related and can teach your kids educational concepts as well! Here are some ideas to not only make this winter incredibly fun but also educational at the same time.
1. Play With Snow
If you live in an area where snow falls in December, you’re in luck! Snow is one of the most wonderful things about winter break. It comes once a year and there’s a lot of things you can do with it. If anything, you are familiar with building snowmen, snowball fights, making snow angels.
It’s all fun and games, but did you know it could be extremely educational as well?
The next time you have some snow, get out the measuring tape. Have you kids try and figure out the exact measurements for the body, and where they want to put the adornments like the nose and the buttons. By measuring out their snowman, they will be able to not only learn about the real-life application of maths, but build the best darn snowman they’ve ever built!
Snowball fights are also a great way to learn applied physics in real life. For example, when kids get into a snowball fight, instead of just lobbing it and hoping for a hit, have them pay attention to the distance and trajectory of the snowball. They might be able to improve their accuracy if they are mindful of these hidden factors, and make themselves more aware of how physics works in real life!
2. Cozy Up And Watch Movies
Winter is always the best time to stay indoors, wrap a warm fuzzy blanket around you, and enjoy a hot cup of chocolate. Kids can make this experience even more perfect and educational by watching STEM-related programs on TV. Recently, Netflix has released many new documentaries about the environment, sustainability, society and nature. They should definitely check out the documentaries section, they might find something that could completely change their worldview!
If watching Netflix isn’t their thing, there are a ton of Youtube channels out there that specialize in fun and educational videos. Our personal favourites are Kurzgesagt and The Infographic Channel. They make learning REALLY fun!
3. Go Online And Play Games
If your kids prefer to get in on more action, instead of watching movies they could also go online and play some video games. Message some friends and have a blast on Minecraft or Roblox. Build a stronghold with their friends and really engage their brains!
They could also grab a Nintendo Switch and play puzzle games such as Breath of The Wild, Mario Party, or even Overcooked. Playing games that have a lot of physics-based puzzles and interaction with friends is a great way to keep the winter boredom away and do something that is educational, fun and meaningful!
4. Explore The Kitchen
Sometimes, the best learning experiences start from home. You wouldn’t believe it, but the kitchen is one of the best places to learn about science.
When you’re in the kitchen, offer your kids to help out and learn how to cook. Have them take note of how everything functions and interacts with each other. The heat and strength of the flames relate to how the food’s texture turns out.
The way each ingredient is prepared is also science on its own. For example, did you know the way you cut an onion decides how it tastes? When you cut end to end and follow the grain, you cause less damage to the onion than if you were to slice it through the middle. By doing so, the onion tastes sweeter, less pungent, and won’t make you cry when you cut it. How neat is that?
There are so many cool scientific things to learn when you are experimenting in the kitchen. The best part of it all is the fact that once you’re done, you have a delicious treat waiting for you!
5. Go On A Road Trip With The Family
Road trips are a wonderful way to spend the winter with your family. You get to travel, spend quality time and go to unique places. Your kids might think the long car rides can get a bit boring, but there are games that can make it fun and educational. For example, you could have your kids look for specific cars and tally up their numbers. Maybe try and see who is faster. To make it even more interesting, try only looking for red cars and not pointing it out to each other, but whoever said an answer first is the winner.
There are many games that you can make up along the road to play with the family. It makes the trip ten times more meaningful that way!
6. Enroll in an educational STEM camp
Programs like Engineering For Kids offer STEM camps or workshops during the winter break holiday. If you don’t have the luxury of staying home during winter break while your kids aren’t in school, this could be the perfect option for giving them an enjoyable break but also finding that much-needed childcare for the week.
You can find camps in topics like Interactive Engineering, Robotics, or even Technology and Coding – there’s something for everyone! Or, if you’re just looking for a day or two of fun, a workshop might be the perfect fit for your busy holiday schedule.
Create Your Own Fun Winter Adventure
These activities are just the tip of the iceberg. You can make your own winter truly unique, educational and fun with just a little bit of creativity and come up with an adventure of your very own!