5 Holiday Activities for Preschoolers to Continue Learning Over the Holiday Season!
The winter holidays represent different traditions and celebrations for all of us. What’s common amongst all is the shared opportunity to spend time with loved ones. Kids’ Care club encourages all families to take the opportunity of this holiday season to continue their preschoolers learning, together, in fun, festive ways! Here are our five favorite ways to enjoy this time of year.
Not only does cooking serve as an opportunity to try new recipes or continue homemade meals passed down through generations, it also presents learning opportunities!
- Expand Vocabulary. Increased exposure to new words and terms that a new recipe presents can help expand vocabulary for your little one.
- Strengthen fine and gross motor skills. Stirring, measuring, rolling, cutting, pouring, scooping and other hands-on cooking skills are all ways that contribute to developing your preschoolers fine and gross motor skills.
- Strengthen basic understanding of math. The addition of necessary ingredients and time spent cooking to create the final product helps to strengthen early math skills. Talking about the numbers that go into a recipe doesn’t take much extra time, and can go a long way to promote your preschooler’s understanding of math.
- Build Confidence. Completing a meal from start to finish helps instill confidence in your preschooler. Knowing that they were able to assist in cooking a meal or baking a dessert for the whole family is a great way to boost their confidence!
- Develop an adventurous and diverse taste palette. Cooking together offers more opportunities for your preschooler to try new foods. Use this time together in the kitchen to sample new ingredients and learn why healthy foods are so important for our bodies.
Explore the Outdoors
Did you know that there are numerous preschool-aged friendly hikes spread across San Diego county? With a great all-year climate and easy access to pristine natural areas, we’re grateful for the countless opportunities to get outside. Here at Kids’ Care Club, we like to remember a few things before heading outside.
- Have fun! Hikes shouldn’t be focused on simply completing a trail. It’s important to stay flexible if the original plan isn’t working out. Turn the hike into a scavenger hunt to find different plants and animals, or make it a goal to check out various natural features such as waterfalls and streams!
- Bring Snacks and Fluids. The sunny, dry climate of San Diego requires some preparation. At the minimum, bring enough snacks and fluids to properly fuel your adventure outside. As an extra incentive to continue eating while outside, bring fun, healthy snacks for any breaks you may take.
- Safety First! Remember to check for optimal weather before heading out. The days after heavy rain in San Diego often result in trail-closures, make sure to check ahead that you’re in the clear. Before heading out on a day hike, we always bring these essentials: Map of trail, Sun Protection (Sunglasses, Sunscreen, hat), Warm Clothing, First Aid Kit, Nutrition (Extra Food), Hydration (Extra Water).
With these important tips in mind, consider these our favorite close-to-home hiking trails:
Don’t stop reading
Reading together with your preschooler helps support early literacy, and the extra time that the holidays provide serve as the perfect time to do so. Reading aloud to your early learner can help build a strong foundation for literacy developed later in life. Creating a tradition of reading holiday-themed books can help expand upon their vocabulary and world knowledge. Starting early can help make childhood favorites and form traditions that will last for years to come. Head over to your local library for festive options to choose from! Need ideas of what to look for? Here are some great holiday options to read aloud with your preschooler.
Here at Kids’ Care Club, we firmly believe in the power of creative arts. This holiday season, fill your house with festive cheer by continuing this practice and creating art together as a family! Our favorite crafts for this time of year are making homemade ornaments, decorating gingerbread men, or making homemade snowflakes (to make up for those that we don’t receive during our San Diego winter!). Our holiday Pinterest board is home to numerous fun ideas.
Across various cultures, music serves as an important part of multi-generational family traditions and a tool to create powerful memories. Not only is it fun, but it’s an excellent way to support your preschoolers’ early brain and language development. These benefits are why music is such a large part of the curriculum here at Kids’ Care Club, and heavily implemented into NAEYC standards. Singing can take place at any time of the day – playtime, daily activities, bath time, visiting with family – the choice is yours! If you’re feeling adventurous this holiday season, try caroling with your preschooler, family, and friends. Our favorite holiday jingles this year are Santa Shark, Reindeer Pokey, and I’m a Little Snowman.
Regardless if you stay home or go away for the holidays, there are countless opportunities to stay engaged and learn together as a whole family. As always, you can ask your preschooler’s teacher for any additional ways to continue the fun at home.