CIS’s Open Minds coordinator Christa Craats shares fun activities to do with the kids at home during the Covid-19 pandemic.
With all the schools closed (no) thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic, parents all over the world are venturing into the intimidating world of virtual learning. But it doesn’t have to be all that scary – especially when you’ve got help from experts like Canadian International School’s Open Minds coordinator, Christa Craats. When it comes to authentic, engaging learning experiences, we know we can count on the folks at CIS to deliver, especially through its innovative Open Minds programme. But don’t just take it from us: here’s some easy-peasy Open Minds-inspired activities Christa has whipped up for you to do with your primary school-aged kids at home:
Activity #1: Pattern hunt
It’s time to go on a pattern hunt! Ask your child to find as many patterns as they can around your house or in your garden. Armed with a sketchpad and pencil or iPad, ask them to duplicate the patterns they find by taking pictures or drawing sketches. Then inspire them to create a whole new item (a dress, pair of shoes, couch – it’s up to you!) using these patterns.
Activity #2: Let’s get interviewing!
Ask the kids to pick any object from your home or garden to interview. It could be a plant, their shoes, Dad’s smelly socks, the pet cat, a toothbrush or computer… let their imaginations run wild! Let them list out some questions and imagine what their chosen object would reply.
Activity #3: Alter your reality
Hand your child a pair of glasses and ask them to pretend they can change what we view through them. Ask the question: “How would these glasses change the way you see the world and the things in it?” For example, they might decide that their bedroom light may be a musical DJ playing “You light up my life” – just let their imaginations go wild!
Activity #4: 100 things
Have you ever looked at something long enough to notice 100 things about it? Now’s a great time to ask your kids this question! Ask them to pick an object in your house or garden and make a list of 100 things they can see about it. This is bound to keep them busy for quite a while (fingers crossed)!
Here’s what Christa has to say about CIS’s Open Minds programme:
“The programme is unique among schools in Singapore because it uses innovative and authentic learning experiences in settings outside the classroom,” she says. “All students in Grades 1 to 6 get to participate. Kids can learn by reading textbooks or watching videos, but personal experience makes abstract concepts more concrete. Plus, learning this way slows down the learning, allowing for deeper observation and questioning. It also encourages creativity and imagination and connects kids’ knowledge learned in the classroom to the outside world. Ultimately, the kids learn to develop observation skills, look at things from a different perspective, think critically and solve problems in open-minded ways.”
Why Open Minds activities work
“Kids like the challenge that comes with thinking outside the box and answering critical-thinking questions,” adds Christa. “They also enjoy being able to engage in environments that connect directly to their learning, as well as the time and space to observe a topic in depth. Not only that, but it’s completely different to a normal day in class.”
Want to learn more about CIS’s innovative Open Minds programme? Call the school’s Admissions Team on +65 6734 8088 or visit its website here.
This post is in partnership with CIS.