It is fascinating watching young animals playing. They seem to be having a lot of fun but the games they play all have a specific learning angle. Young kittens will playful pounce on each other and engage in furious chases. Whilst they are playing they are learning valuable skills that will benefit them in later life.

SEE ALSO: Teaching the Arts
Summer Holiday with Entertaining and Enlightening Hobbies!
Image Credit: Raison Descartier

Human children are no different. All new things to a growing child is a learning experience and developing skills based on these experiences will set children up for life. This is why it is so important to direct play in a positive and educational light. As children enjoy fun, educational games they will be learning important skills and developing their bodies and minds for the future.

Summer Holiday Blues

Summer holidays can seem very long to parents. It can be difficult to think of new things to keep children entertained. Once boredom sets in the inevitable arguments and bad behaviour begin and then no-one enjoys themselves. One way to set the summer off to a good start is to encourage your children to begin a new hobby - Hobbies are a great way to give focus to free time. Not only is the actual hobby itself fun but researching and planning what you are going to do and how you are going to do it can be educational too.
Image Credit: ansik

There are lots of wonderful and diverse hobbies out there. You should find something to suit all ages and interests from those that love the outdoors to those that enjoy stopping at home.

Playing with Dolls

Dolls houses are lovely to look at and even more fun to play with. Children and big kids too with find these tiny replica homes fascinating and they really do encourage creative and educational play. If you are on a tight budget then you could consider building a dolls house yourself. Building the basic frame is relatively easy and then you and your family can have fun decorating it. Kids will love to choose colours, fabrics and wallpapers and this is a great way of encouraging their creativity.
Image Credit: MIKI Yoshihito

You can find a wide range of dolls house accessories online as well.  This will enable you to gradually fill your dolls house with a selection of miniature items from furniture through to replica food.  There are some great ways you can encourage educational play with these model homes including:
    ·    Theme Design – choose a theme or period in history for your dolls house decoration. Researching the types of decoration needed can be a great way to spend free time and can be tied in with projects children might be studying at school (such as the Victorian or Elizabethan periods).
    ·   Craft Interior Features – if money is tight then ask children to craft their own interior features to go with some bought dolls house accessories. With a little help they will find it easy to make useful items for their dolls house including miniature curtains, rugs and even basic pieces of furniture.

Summer Garden

Summer is the perfect time to get out in the garden. Children love to grow things and tending a garden will help them take more responsibility. Gardening is a relaxing and rewarding hobby and can interest kids all ages. If you have an outdoor space then fence off a manageable area for them. If not then invest in windowsill planters. Involve them from the very beginning and help them choose a range of plants for their garden. There is a wonderful feeling from seeing seeds you have planted breaking through the soil for the first time! As well as planting seeds invest in some more mature seedlings from a garden centre. This will give children something to look after whilst they are waiting for their own seeds to sprout.
Image Credit: Zdenko

Growing vegetables is very rewarding and will help children understand more about food and how it gets to the table. Children will also be more likely to eat vegetables if they have grown them themselves!

Choose bright and colourful plants that are robust to stand up to family garden life. Sunflowers, daisies, and geraniums are all easy to grow and produce fantastic colourful displays. Plants like lavender and thyme are easy to care for and don’t mind if little gardeners get distracted and forget to water them for a few days...
Gem Wilson
About the Author:

Gem Wilson is a busy mum and enthusiastic dolls house collector. She began her hobby in childhood and has introduced her daughters to the delights of these miniature homes and dolls house accessories.

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