Teenagers can be hard to motivate when it comes to school and learning. TheSchoolRun’s Elena Dalrymple explains how your everyday routine is packed with opportunities to help your senior school age grandchildren with their education without them even realising it
Secondary school - 11 and over
- Whatever the weather: Why not challenge your grandchild to create their own weather station? They’ll need to devise a weather-recording chart, which will help their design and logic skills. An empty drinks bottle and funnel can be used as a rain gauge – measure the water in a measuring jug for some hands-on science. A simple home-made flag or wind sock can teach them about wind direction and reading a thermometer will help them understand temperature. Budding actors may like to put it all together to produce a mini-weather report and ‘present’ their own forecast.
- All in the family: How much do your grandchildren really know about you? Get the grandchildren to compile questions (ideal for honing their literacy skills) and then interview you about your life. Don’t forget to provide some hard evidence for the young journalist – photographs and mementoes will make your stories come to life.
- Kitchen maths: Spending quality time together in the kitchen offers learning opportunities for children of all ages. You can share the science of food by proving bread dough, for example, or try the odd kitchen experiment (thickening a sauce with flour). Recipes also offer hands-on maths practice, as you’ll need to measure (or estimate) ingredients, multiply quantities and use fractions to work out portion sizes. Incorporate some handwriting practice by working on a family cookbook together and make sure your gran’s recipe for Manchester Tart is passed on to the next generation – all without leaving your kitchen.
Foxed by phonics? Puzzled by partitioning? TheSchoolRun.com aims to help parents and grandparents understand what and how children learn at primary school today. As an exclusive taster of the resources available on the website, Yours readers can claim two free educational puzzle packs for children in KS1 (aged 5-7) and KS2 (aged 7-11). To access your packs go to www.theschoolrun.com/yoursoffer You will be able to download the packs onto your computer and print them out as many times as you wish.