Keep Kids Focused Before Holiday Break with These 5 Tips
It’s that time of year when all the kids are excited about Christmastime and they’re not in the mood to do school. But Mom looks at her calendar and lesson plan schedule and she knows there’s still a few more assignments that have to get done before holiday break begins. If you’re in the same boat as me, then you know what I’m talking about! Homeschooling before holiday break can be very challenging sometimes. Today I am sharing five tips that help me keep my kids focused before holiday break.
Our Christmas break begins December 19th and we will take three weeks off from school. In the meantime, the kids still have lessons to complete before we can take our break. Honestly, this is one part I don’t like about the holidays. Don’t get me wrong– I love Christmas. But once November hits, the kids start to get a little antsy because they know Thanksgiving is coming up. We take about a week off for Thanksgiving and then we have three weeks until it’s time for another break. Sometimes it makes getting doing school a little challenging.
But never fear! After homeschooling for close to four years now, I think I finally found the solution to this challenge. Don’t do school for the month of December! Ha ha! My kids wish! No way! Instead I like to mix fun activities, holiday baking, field trips, and remind the kids of their academic goals to help keep them focused before our holiday break.
Keep kids focused before holiday break by mixing fun activities with lessons.
This is actually really important. I mentioned doing something like this with our homeschooling through the Thanksgiving holiday. In previous years, I have made the mistake of scheduling nothing but academic lessons with no “fun stuff” for the kids to do. I was so consumed with trying to get the lessons done that I didn’t even think of planning anything fun. All that did was lead to grumpy children who grumbled and complained about doing their schoolwork.
So after learning my lesson, I started mixing fun activities with regular lessons. Here are a few fun activities on our December school schedule:
- coloring in Christmas coloring books
- DIY Christmas ornaments
- movie and pizza day
- Advent chocolate calendar
- holiday shopping
Yes, that’s right. I’m counting holiday shopping as school. Why? Because it makes a great math lesson and a life skills lesson. Now that my two older children are teens, they are learning about money management and how to buy things they need/want. We’ve actually created a holiday spending budget for the teens, so they have to learn how to manage their budget. Just one example of a fun holiday lesson!
Plan holiday baking for Home Economics.
My girls are going to love this one because they both love to bake! Christmas isn’t Christmas without holiday baking, so we have to do a few lessons on baking holiday treats. If your kiddos are feeling restless with regular school lessons, simply schedule a few Home Economic lessons and have the kids bake cookies, cupcakes, or any yummy holiday dessert of your choice. Baking lessons would also be perfect for teaching children about family recipes!
If you’re not much of a cook or maybe you’re pressed for time, that’s okay! You can still include holiday baking for your school lessons. There are pre-made desserts found at your local store. Trader Joe’s sells Ugly Christmas Sweater cookie sets. We’re going to do this next week. And you can also buy cookie dough at the grocery store. Some cookie dough, such as Pillsbury, have decorations already on the dough, for instance, snowmen or Christmas trees.
Go on a couple of field trips.
You can’t go wrong with fun field trips! Many places like your local library offer holiday-themed events. Planning a field trip or two during your final weeks before holiday break will help break the monotony of school. Plus, it’s a great way for your kids to get all of that anxious energy out. Even just planning a trip to the mall can make for an enjoyable field trip.
We are going to a holiday market in the city to do holiday shopping. It makes for a great field trip because the holiday market will be on a weekday during work hours, so it won’t be as crowded as the weekend markets. We’re also going to the library and out to lunch at one of our favorite restaurants.
Remind them of their goals.
Reminding your kids of the school goals is also another great way to help them get through the school days. With my teens, we have weekly meetings on Mondays. I tell them what to expect for the week, if we’re going on a field trip, and other academic information. When I remind them of the school lessons that they need to complete before break, they become aware of what they need to do. This also teaches them how to be responsible for their schoolwork.
If you have younger children, you can still remind them of their academic goals but maybe in a fun way. For instance, you can create a poster and write the goals on the poster. You can even make it a game and say for each task you check off the goal poster, you will give them a small treat. When all of the goals have been completed, then you can have a movie and pizza day.
Do Take Time Off!!
I know how easy it is to caught up in finishing lessons and wanting to get ahead. But we all need a break. Even our little ones need a break from school, and they LOVE doing school! Whether your break time is for a week or up to three weeks, make the most of it. Take care of you and spend quality time with your loved ones.
If you don’t complete all of the lessons you had scheduled, it’s okay. Don’t stress out about it. Just make note of it and make sure you start where you left off after you holiday break.5 Tips for Homeschooling Before Holiday Break #homeschool #homeschoolmom Click To Tweet
Trying to complete school right before the holidays can get a little stressful at times. Kids are so excited about having a break from school and having fun during the break. It is possible to do school before the break; sometimes you just have to get a little creative. I hope my tips are helpful for you! Happy Holidays!