By Becc Lester-Beam, Community Outreach Coordinator at Seminole Science Charter School
This year has been tough on all of us, but it has been especially challenging for school children who’ve had to adapt to so much change all at once. While it’s important for children to maintain routines and continue learning during winter break, they – like all of us – also deserve time to rest and relax. With local restrictions in place and safety concerns due to the pandemic, traditional festivities and events may be cancelled – but there are still plenty of ways to provide your children with holiday fun.
Have a movie night.
Get the popcorn ready! Having a movie night once or twice a week is a great way to give your family a sense of routine and a weekly event everyone can look forward to. Draw film names out of a hat or take turns choosing which film to watch to keep things exciting. You can even set up a popcorn station or making DIY “movie tickets” to make it feel like a real movie theater!
Read a book together as a family.
Reading together as a family is another great way to give your kids something to look forward to each night, while also keeping their comprehension skills sharp. Children of all ages will appreciate this quality time. Plus, they’ll feel accomplished after finishing a book (or two!) over the break.
Go on a virtual “outing” to a museum, zoo or holiday light display.
The weather in Florida may not be “frightful,” but getting the whole family together for an outing amid the pandemic is certainly a challenge. Instead, take a virtual trip together to light displays across the country such as the 2020 Parade of Lights in Fort Worth – or even meet Santa at home!
For a more educational virtual outing, invite your family to take a virtual tour of the Bronx Zoo. Kids can take turns pointing out their favorite animals and read more about them on the zoo’s website. Another great option is a virtual tour of the National Museum of Natural History. Your little ones can choose their favorite exhibits to explore and even take a narrated tour.
Try a new festive recipe or baking trend.
What better way to get the family together in the kitchen than with chocolate? These hot chocolate bombs are a great activity to teach little ones how to navigate the kitchen, as well as learn a thing or two about science. The melting chocolate and exploding hot cocoa and marshmallows will make this an exciting treat for the entire family. You can even shake things up a little by adding your own surprise treats to the middle!
With a little creativity and the help of technology, we can find plenty of ways to keep our kids safe, happy and engaged while they’re on break from school this holiday season.