With winter break fast approaching, many parents ask what they can do to ensure their scholar keeps learning while they’re not in school. You might be surprised at the low-cost activities you can do at home and in the community to keep your scholar engaged:

  • Read with your scholar every day. Even scholars who are old enough to read on their own will benefit from having family reading time. Turn off the TV and set the cell phones aside and dive into your books. Afterward, ask your scholar to summarize what happened and predict what is going to happen next.
  • Cook together. Measuring ingredients is a great way for scholars to practice math skills at home and learn about any family traditions you may have for the holiday or winter seasons. If you are able to find a recipe that uses in-season vegetables and local ingredients, that is an even better way to incorporate additional learning.
  • Visit a museum. Many museums in the Twin Cities, like the Minneapolis Institute of Art, are free to attend. Others, like the Walker Art Center and the Minnesota Children’s Museum have free or reduced-price admission on certain days of the week. Walking around a museum is great way to get some exercise during the colder months and learn a little bit about history or art.
  • Explore a library. Libraries are warm places with books, movies, music, computers, and internet. Stop by your local library and grab a book with your scholar, or listen to a podcast online.

If you have childcare needs over winter break, or if you need assistance finding winter clothes or with other winter needs, contact the Greater Twin Cities United Way by calling 2-1-1 or visiting www.211unitedway.org.