Fredericksburg Parent

June 2020

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www.FredericksburgParent.NET 11 .EXPLORE NATURE. Apply what your child has learned in life science to your backyard. "We always talk about different birds, bugs, and how flowers and trees grow. My daughter actually teaches me some things that she's learned in school. It makes her feel good to know she is helping me learn, too," Elder says. Science museums and nature outreach cen- ters also offer inexpensive classes and camps. .GO DIGITAL. Got a bug enthusiast? Have him grab the camera and go on a scavenger hunt for different species. When he's done, he can make a digital presentation of his discoveries. "Many elementary kids know how to use multi-media even more than parents. They find it fascinating and think it's fun," Norris says. .NURTURE CREATIVITY. With increased emphasis on raising test scores, many schools no longer devote much class time for artistic development. But art education enhances creative thinking, motor skills and social and emotional development. Have a splatter paint party on canvas in your backyard. Watercolor on textured paper. Make collages out of old magazines. Further explore the visual arts at pottery cafes and art museums. Weave learning into daily errands and interactive activities found in your own backyard. .HEAD TO THE MALL. How much is 20 percent off? When bargain shopping with your child, teach her how to cal- culate the prices of marked down items. .TUNE IN. If your child is passionate about music, attend local concert series in parks, which are often free. Encourage her to learn about the history of the music she's interested in and read biographies of favorite musicians. .JOURNAL. Purchase an inexpensive journal or notebook that your child can personal- ize. Write a prompt or a question at the top of the page. Take turns writ- ing messages and stories back and forth. .PRACTICE TIME MANAGEMENT. Assign a weekly project for your children with a deadline to help them practice time management skills. "Base it on their interest so it doesn't feel like work," Norris says. They can select and research a specific topic, create a digital slide show about what they learned and then present it to you or extended family. .READ TOGETHER. "Children often say they don't like to read because they've only read things chosen for them by others," says Helma Hawkins, a children's librarian. Summer is the perfect time to help your child find books and magazines that match his interests. Read together or start an informal book club with your child and a few friends. Schedule an afternoon to discuss the selection over milk and cookies.

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