•Features some gifted items•
This week marks the beginning of the children’s Easter break from school, but it won’t be the same as previous years as their school has already been closed to the majority of students, apart from the children of key workers, for the past couple of weeks. As well as working from home ourselves, Ed and I have also been attempting to teach the children using a variety of work set by their school and online resources, many of which have been made free or heavily discounted during the lockdown.
I wanted to share some of these with my readers, as I find it really helpful to have a selection of websites, activities and educational apps to fall back on when the kids are learning from home. There are a couple of these which I have been gifted, which I will put an asterisk against in the interest of full disclosure, however the majority are free for all parents to access at this time.
I wanted to mention Joe Wicks’ PE lessons, although I am sure most people are already aware by now. Joe, otherwise known as The Body Coach, is going live weekday mornings during the lockdown to start the day off with a workout aimed at children (but enjoyed by people of all ages across the world). The video revenue is going straight to the NHS, which is amazing, and definitely worth giving the videos a watch!
Knowsley Safari have launched an online learning hub – Home School Safari, with free learning resources and downloadable worksheets, updated with new content on an ongoing basis. Their videos are sure to get children interested with everything from a lion having an X-Ray to a tiger having root canal treatment!
Staedtler UK is giving parents and guardians of children aged 4-11 free access to its online community for UK primary school teachers. Simply register online for key stage 1 and 2 resources including ‘Multiplying Creepy Crawlies’, ‘Shape Poems’ and ‘Flags of the World’.
Looking for a Science project? The Great Exhibition at Home is a seven week home science project about science and engineering helping to protect the planet, with the chance to win science equipment for your child’s school by submitting a one minute video about what they’ve learnt and their own ideas for inventions to help fight climate change.
If your little ones are LEGO fans, you can watch the company’s employees from around the world keeping themselves busy at home during the lockdown with LEGO bricks, finding moments of ‘playful joy’ every day. The videos are part of an initiative from the brand #LetsBuildTogether, to inspire families who are at home together during the pandemic, including daily challenges, ideas and live build-a-longs.
Tassomai* are providing a discount on their online learning courses for children aged 7-17 learning at home. The easy to use website and app provides quizzes and short videos to break down content, which its tailored for each individual user using an algorithm to work on where extra focus is needed. As well as being structured, Tassomai is also motivating and rewarding, with children encouraged to hit daily goals, with rewards of experience points and mastery stars.
If your children are missing being outside in nature, Manchester-based forest school We Are Adventurers have brought their learning online with daily videos uploaded to Facebook with fun and engaging activities.
If you have a budding artist, STABILO UK* have a whole host of products available to purchase online and their drawing tutorials are sure to keep little ones occupied during that conference call.
Another great company for providing inspiration for young artists, eatsleepdoodle also have some brilliant products that your little ones can colour in and design themselves, letting their creativity shine. I particularly like this world map tablecloth, which is educational as well as fun to colour in together! The kids love it.
I can’t recommend Letterland* enough for educational resources that are fun and engaging. I was previously sent across some of their range for Benjamin and he has been loving practising his handwriting with their interactive and free to download app. They have plenty of resources on their website for preschool and school age children too.
Dopper water bottles have created an initiative called the Dopper Changemaker Challenge Junior with free activity sheets and videos for children aged 8-12. The challenge aims to get children thinking about the importance of reducing single use plastics. Kids can even submit their own creations for the chance to present their ideas to a panel of judges, with the winner having their prototype developed and showcased to inspire others.
Busy Things are offering 7 days access free, or a month for just £1 at the moment. The online educational resource has over 900 award winning games and activities for early years and key stage 1 and 2 (suitable for ages 3-11). With a fun approach to all the subjects in the National Curriculum, including maths, English, geography, history and coding, there are also plenty of printables available to use at home.
If you are looking to teach children more about nature, I Ate Sunshine for Breakfast* is written by plant expert and ecologist Michael Holland FLS. The book celebrates the plants in our lives from the mint in toothpaste to medicines and cotton sheets on our beds. It is aimed at children aged seven and over, and their parents to help educate and inspire about plants and nature, including fun educational activities.
This post features gifted items, marked with an asterisk. All words and images are my own.