Posted in Christmas, Family fun, Kindness, Parenting

Our Christmas Kindness Calendar

I love Christmas time with our kids!  Seeing The magic of Christmas through their eyes is the most awesome part to witness.

In our family we have quite a few Christmas traditions now that our eldest is six.  We have Treacle the house elf who arrives and causes mahem every night, driving around seeing the Christmas lights, watching Elf the movie together and going to the Christmas church service at our Church.

Something to help teach our children about spreading the joy of Christmas is our Christmas Kindness Advent Calendar!  Where each day of the month we have an act of kindness or special Christmas activity to do.  Why not help our children to not only think of themselves in this season but others too!

I know some activities may be a little old if your children are young but even if you carry out these and your children witness these can be equally as good as they look up to you!

I have had lots of feedback on this idea and followers wanted to know what we do in our household so I have the document below that you can print and use if you wish!

As always I would love to see how these worked for you so feel free to share your pictures with me or tag Raising Oaks in your Insta stories!  I will update you daily on our activities too so make sure you are following!

Our Christmas Kindness Calendar !

Posted in Classroom, Education, Family fun, Parenting

Super STEM challenges 

You may have noticed on my Instagram I am often posting our latest STEM challenge.  You may be thinking what is a STEM challenge? Why do a STEM challenge?  Why does she love them so much? 

STEM challenge stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.  It is a group challenge that is set that includes using aspects of these subjects aswell as cooperative learning and team play!  Sometimes these challenges can be adapted to a STEAM challenge, this is when Art is added!

I have found STEM challenges have improved the ability for students to work together, problem solve, communicate clearly, encourage one another and most importantly work as a team.  STEM challenges obviously help use their knowledge and skills in engineering, science, technology and mathematics in a practical way.  

Basically they are given a task with a specific purpose, having a mountain fun and working collaboratively to solve the problem.  Something we all have to learn to do when we join the workforce.  Students are given a set time frame, and materials.  They are able to use all materials or only some.  At the end we look at who completed the challenge and what obstacles they found.  We also have a team work discussion, talking about how we can improve our cooperation skills. 

Some examples of STEM challenges I have completed with my class are:

–  Creating a freestanding balloon tower with 10 balloons and a piece of masking tape.

–  Using ice block sticks and masking tape to create a bridge to hold the most weight. 

–  Creating a slingshot to send an army soldier the furtherest using 5 ice block sticks, a plastic cup, two rubber bands, tape and a piece of string.

–  Creating a Tinfoil boat that will hold the most marbles without sinking with one piece of tinfoil.

–  Creating an egg carrier for a running race.

The ideas are endless!  Why not try one these school holidays with the kids?