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Inspire Learning Through Creative Play

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The following is a post from guest author, Colleen Kessler of Raising Lifelong Learners.

Play is a child’s work, but it’s easy to forget that in the midst of the day to day things we need to get accomplished in our homeschools. While the rest of today’s society seems to want to shorten childhood, having kids grow up faster than they should, we have the blessing of preserving childhood for as long as it can last.

Inspire Learning Through Creative Play

Consider these quotes by some of the greatest minds ever:

Play is the work of the child.” – Maria Montessori

Play is the highest form of research.” – Albert Einstein

It is a happy talent to know how to play.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Play gives children a chance to practice what they are learning.” – Mr. Rogers

Act It Out

Hands-on learning can be as simple as integrating play into your homeschool for your preschooler and elementary kids. By playing and acting things out, your kids get to relive the learning and solidify their foundations. They are also able to make sense of their worlds.

When we studied ancient Egypt, my kids {2, 4, and 9 at the time} spent hours playing mummy. They painstakingly wrapped dolls and their pets in toilet paper and buried them with riches and toy food. Sometimes, they even buried “family members” just like the Egyptian pharaohs were buried.

Wrapping the Mummys Pet

The kids asked to go back to the library to check out more books so they could get things right when they played, and the 10-year-old read nonfiction books to the younger ones for fun. They learned so much, and it was all because they were allowed free time to play with what they were learning.

Set Up Pretend Play

There are so many ways to set up creative play that inspires learning, hands-on fun, and creative thinking. Try scattering toy fruit in the yard on a spring day and harvesting the bounty. Your kids could then gather those fruits and vegetables and host a farmer’s market. You’ll cover classification and what things need to grow, as well as practical skills like managing money and making change.

Picking fruits and veggies from the yard

Or, if your littlest learners are embarking on a transportation theme unit, try making fabulously fun cardboard airplane wings with tin foil and duct tape. Just cut a large cardboard box into the shape of airplane wings. Then,  cover them with tin foil, and secure the edges with duct tape. Make loops out of duct tape for the armholes, and let your little guy or gal fly around the house.

Flying Preschoolers

Remember, creative hands-on fun and learning doesn’t have to be hard. It’s as easy as opening up your own imagination.

Inspire Learning Through Creative Play
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This article was written by a Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers guest author. See the author's full bio in the body of the post.

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