How to keep your child’s mind sharp in the winter holidays

Parents everywhere are getting frustrated with their children’s increasing dependency on electronics. The overload of electronic appliances has affected children’s lives to such a degree that they are seldom seen outside these days. From video games to iPads to smartphones, these appliances have taken up all the time of our precious tiny tots, therefore keeping them away from activities that stimulate their brains and bodies.

It is now more important than ever to keep your children sharp and agile, preferably without the use of electronics. After all the world has so much to teach us, if only we open our eyes and look! Here we will share a few tips that you can utilize to keep your child’s brain sharp as he spends his winter holidays at home

1. Read, Read, and Read more!

Reading mixes fun with learning

Reading mixes fun with learning!

Kids engage with electronics since it keeps their brains busy. However there are more productive ways of quenching the thirst of your child’s brain, such as reading books. Even in the digital age, reading is one of the most effective ways to learn new things. While it would be great if they learned new things from their school books, they will not be too eager since the holidays are going on. Instead, give them new material to read such as storybooks, encyclopedias, cookbooks, and more. You can also test their grasping skills by asking them to summarize their reading. Reading aloud is also a great skill, which teaches them better pronunciation and improves their reading speed. By interacting with your kids after they have read something, you engage them in thinking about new things and responding to them in a creative way.

2. Make math fun:

Families spend a lot of time together during the holidays. This makes it a wonderful time to let your child start liking maths a little more. Give them a few jobs that will take up their attention and teach them faster calculation. A few suggestions include- asking your child to help you figure out how to make a recipe with half the quantity, or double the quantity; go grocery shopping with your kid and ask them to tell you the total amount being spent on fruits and vegetables separately; and so on. These activities will help them test their mind using math skills while spending time with you and doing something fun!

3. Don’t let car rides be boring:

Make car rides interesting with fun games

Make car rides interesting with fun games!

While you are driving a car, your attention is on the road. However, for your child, car rides are boring since they have nothing to do. Keeping your child engaged during car rides is a great way to keep his brain sharp. For example, you could ask each family member to note down a license plate, and remove the alphabets from it, then compare which person got the largest number. You can also take this game to a new level by comparing each digit’s place and calculating which person has the highest number in a particular place. Another way to keep your kids engaged is to start a story chain that has specific elements about a place, such as one person saying- “I love Vizag because it has a beach with soft sand.” followed by another person saying- “She loves Vizag because it has a beach with soft sand, but I love Nagarjunasagar Dam because of the sound of water that comes from it”, and so on. Everyone in the car builds up on the story, adding their bits to it. This activity becomes a fun way to work on your kids’ memory skills.

4. Keep them active:

Kids who are playing outside are engaging their bodies and their minds, irrespective of whether they are doing it on a playground, or riding their cycles, or even engaging in a physical sport such as cricket or badminton. If your child isn’t doing any of these, find an age-appropriate activity for your child that is new for them. It could be sewing, or table tennis, or painting, anything that you think will catch their fancy. When the brain is learning new skills, it is automatically staying sharp. You can also utilize memory games to help your child stay sharp. Memory games usually include showing a few items to your kids for a very little time and then asking them to tell you all the items that you showed to them. This game can be played with almost anything, and is always fun for your kids.

Helping your child keep his brain sharp is no longer a terrifying task. Adding a few of these fun activities to your child’s daily tasks will keep their minds sharp and bodies agile for a long time.