Dirty Gentleman and I are always on the hunt for things to do with the kids come Saturdays. It always helps if they actually learn and benefit from the activities we do. We are also way more likely to do them if we plan ahead! When we first had Little Miss Psychopath I struggled to come up with ideas that everyone in the family would enjoy AND benefit from. There are seven years between Little Miss Psychopath and Sir.E and Designer Diva sits right in between. It can be hard when your kids are further apart and also when they’re close together.
I thought I’d give ya’ll my list of go-to’s for educational weekend activities we’ve done. Bonus, all our kids actually enjoyed these.
- Learning about a specific culture then going to eat that food or learning to prepare it at home. We’ve done, Japanese, Indian, Ukrainian, Chinese, Vietnamese and a few others. This still remains their favourite weekend activity. We look up the place on a map first, then learn all about it, it’s actually really fun for myself and Dirty Gentleman as well!
- Learning about nature and then taking a nature walk to collect your favourite items and frame them. I loved this one because their little collages turned out so adorable.
- Having a theme specific scavenger hunt where siblings have to learn to work together! This was fun because the big kids had to teach Little Miss Psychopath how to work with them instead of against them. Fun to watch. I got them prizes from the dollar store for after.
- Studying the type of eco-system that’s in your area and then figuring out what plants and animals you can recognize on a walk.
- Ok, so this one is educational for my kids as far as social skills is concerned, which for my 2 ASD kids is important. Studying age appropriate social interaction for someone you don’t know and then generalizing it by going to a park to play. Prizes awarded accordingly of course.
- Studying how turtles and other favourite sea creatures use their bodies in the water. Apply by going swimming for the afternoon and trying your new skills.
- Learning how the colour spectrum works and then testing your theories out with experiments. Pinterest has tons of awesome ways to experiment this!
- Taking turns alternating weekends to teach them how to prepare their favourite meals. Which in our house is macaroni and cheese and sushi haha.
- If you have a conservatory in your area it’s another great and educational activity for kids. We are actually heading to one next weekend! Pics to follow 🙂
- Donating old and un-used toys to your local second hand store or a toy drive. I did this with Little Miss Psychopath last month and she learned about kids in our area who can’t afford to buy dolls, she picked 5 of her dolls to give away. In return she gets one new doll. It actually melted my heart, she only had to give away 3 but chose 5 so other little girls could have them.
- Learning about Inuit or Arctic Culture and constructing a proper igloo outside. Yes this takes your entire weekend and more, but it’s super fun. We did it last year and our “igloo” lasted till spring!
- Reading a book from the Library and then trying to build something from it. We read a book about Time Travellers and tried to build our own replica of the time machine described in the book.
- Playing “Role Reversal”. Once we did this with Sir.E when he was struggling with authority. It quickly taught him why it’s the adults who get to make the rules. One of us was sick and he didn’t want to overdose us with Tylenol haha.
- Teaching them how to play card and board games. With Little Miss Psychopath this includes games like feed the monster where we work on counting and Jenga where we work on fine motor skills. With the big kids we do games like Monopoly and Beat the Parents.
- Learning about a certain artist and art style and then trying to replicate a favourite from that style or artist.
- Teaching them how to bake their favourite goodie, or second favourite if the first is to complicated for their age.
- Studying Each person in the family and then making a quiz for everyone to complete. Almost like the guess who game you play at bridal showers but for your family. With Little Miss Psychopath we just read her the questions and she coloured in a circle under the stick figure of that family member. She can’t write and this was the easiest way I could think for her to participate.
- Teaching them about their heritage and how to prepare foods from your family line.
- Playing “Life Skills” outside. If you have access to a fire pit this one is fun. Once my brother taught them how to build a fire if your lost in the woods with nothing but a shoe lace, a rock and a bowed stick. Very vigorous work.
- Teaching them about emergencies and making your plan together. When we did this I even made the kids run outside in the rain over to the neighbours house for help in their bare feet just to make sure they could do it. We mapped out the quickest path to their house. We also made our fire escape plan and meeting place and talked about different emergency situations. You could even take a trip to the local fire station.
Well, there you go. I hope you enjoy these activities as much as we have! Some of them we have done many times and others only once or twice. But hopefully they at least give you some ideas of what to do this Saturday 🙂 .