• How to stay on schedule during the holiday season

    When you have children, the holidays are a fun and magical time. They can also be frustrating and exhausting when disrupted sleep schedules combine with too much excitement and rich food to create cranky, out-of-sorts little ones. How can you maintain a normal schedule during this festive but hectic season?

    • Make food and sleep a priority. Realistically, there’s no way your child is going to be able to stick to the usual sleeping and eating schedule when there’s holiday travel, activities, visitors, and everything else that comes along with the season. Understanding this, try to stay as close to the normal schedule as possible, being mindful of how much sleep kids need and augmenting with naps when you need to. Bring healthy snacks along to keep kids from binging on sweets and skipping nutrition. If you can keep their diet and sleep as normal as possible, it will help prevent meltdowns and keep them healthy.
    • Be clear about your limits. You may be at someone else’s house, or you may have a slew of invitations to events. Limit the number of social obligations in order to keep from overstimulating the children, and let your friends and family members the rules for your kids. It helps to be honest and open, whether you’re talking about screen time, bedtime, or which foods they’re allowed to eat.
    • Take a piece of home on the road. Bringing along a few comfort items can help kids sleep by making the surroundings feel more familiar. If your children are old enough, let them choose which things to bring, giving them a small bag in which to pack whatever they feel they’ll need.
    • Mind the screens. Over the holidays, it’s easy to fall into letting kids have as much screen time as they want. It’s not great for their brains, though, so make sure to set limits on the time they spend in front of the television, computer, and handheld devices. There are plenty of fun holiday specials on television, but make sure to use discretion as to how many your kids are allowed to watch, and watch them with them, to help them absorb the lessons in these shows.
    • Plan for active downtime. The holiday season offers some great opportunities to get outside and play with your kids, whether you’re walking around looking at lights or tossing around a ball. In between the big holiday events like family dinners and community gatherings, find ways to build your traditions around doing active things together.
    • Use the end of vacation to get back on track. Don’t wait until the night before school starts to resume the regular sleep schedule. Start thinking about this several days in advance, pushing bedtime earlier by about 15 minutes each night so that you’ll be ready to jump back into the school routine.

    When school starts back up, you’ll need a good preschool or afterschool program, and if you’re in Succasunna, NJ, you owe it to yourself to check out Creative Learning Academy. Our most sought-after preschool and afterschool programs in New Jersey provide an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities. Tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, our programs give children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

  • Holiday Traditions Around the World to Make Your Own

    The holidays are approaching, and with them, traditions to celebrate with your family. You probably have traditions stemming from your own faith and culture, or carried over from your childhood, to share with your children. It can be fun, though, to incorporate some new elements. Around the world, people celebrate many different holidays in many different ways. This year, why not take some time to learn about traditions that aren’t familiar to you? You might even find some aspects you’ll want to incorporate in your own holiday celebrations.

    Exposing children to other beliefs and holidays is a great way to help them understand that people come from different backgrounds and cultures, but share some wonderful commonalities. If possible, introduce your children to new holidays and traditions by meeting someone who knows about and celebrates the holiday. If that’s not possible, the public library has a wealth of information about holidays around the world, and you can find videos, photos, and activities online to make them come alive. Here are some December holidays to consider.

    • Christmas and Hanukkah are huge in the United States. Even if your family does not have a foundation of faith, you can teach your children the deeper meanings of these holidays. Reading the Biblical Christmas story, visiting a crèche and singing Christmas carols are all good ways to introduce the concept of Jesus becoming human as a selfless act of love. Visiting a local temple, learning about the Maccabees and their fight for freedom, and creating a Menorah together are all great ways to explore the miracle of Hanukkah with your children, explaining the significance of each element of the celebration.
    • In Europe, December 6th is St. Nicholas Day. It’s celebrated in honor of St. Nicholas, the original Santa Claus, and there are many different legends and traditions that go along with it. One tradition is for children to leave their shoes outside of their doors. Overnight, “St. Nicholas” visits the house, and leaves a small gift or treats inside the shoes. St. Nicholas was known for helping people in need, so giving to the needy might be a good way to celebrate this holiday with your children.
    • Las Posadas is a festival celebrated in Mexico, Central America, and some parts of the United States. It lasts nine days, from December 16th through the 24th, and represents Mary’s nine-month pregnancy and Mary and Joseph’s nine-day journey to Bethlehem. Poinsettias figure largely into the celebration, so it might be fun to create a poinsettia out of construction paper with your children.
    • Kwanzaa is a holiday that honors the heritage of African-Americans. Use books and stories to learn about Kwanzaa’s significance, then consider making Kwanzaa candles and celebrating with a feast.
    • Yule celebrates the Winter Solstice. Some Yule traditions include decorating a tree, singing songs, lighting candles, and making wreaths, all of which are familiar to most kids. If you want to celebrate Yule with your children, teach them about how the days get longer on the solstice and let them make crafts like paper and glitter suns to hang on the tree.

    Learning about holiday celebrations around the world is a great way to celebrate diversity. Another way to promote an appreciation of others is to put your kids in a preschool or an afterschool program that’s diverse. At Creative Learning Academy, we serve families from all around the Succasunna, New Jersey area, so children in our program get to interact with people who they might not otherwise know, through school or the neighborhood. Our most sought-after preschool and afterschool programs in New Jersey provide an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities. Tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, our programs give children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

     

  • Healthy Snack Ideas for the Holiday Season

    Oh, the joys of feeding kids during the holiday season! Rich foods abound, schedules are topsy-turvy, and kids are hyped up on holiday vibes, which can make it harder for them to sit through a full meal. One way to make sure your kids are getting the right nutrition during this hectic time of year is to keep snacks at the ready, to stave off cravings and keep blood sugar at a healthy level. You can also bring healthy but festive snacks to holiday gatherings you attend so that you’ll know your kids have options that aren’t full of sugar and fat.

    • Make fruit kabobs that look like Santa hats. It’s simple! Just use a skewer to stack a grape, a banana, and a strawberry, perhaps topped off with a mini-marshmallow.
    • Arrange fruit and cheese into a Christmas tree. Kids and adults alike appreciate a visually appealing snack, so if you’re tasked with bringing a dish to a party, consider a thoughtfully arranged fruit and cheese plate.
    • Make sandwiches fun with cookie cutters. You can cut them into snowmen, stars, or some other festive shape, to make kids more interested in eating them.
    • Use googly eyes and pipe cleaners to turn applesauce cups into reindeer. Turn the cup upside down, put googly eyes on the front, and glue pipe cleaners shaped like antlers to the back. For a particularly festive touch, add a red jingle bell nose.
    • Sharpies and scraps can make string cheese into snowmen. Draw a face on the front of the string cheese wrapper, top the cheese with a top hat made from a scrap of construction paper. Add a jaunty scarf made from a colorful scrap of fabric.

    What if the holiday season has you feeling crazed, and you don’t have time for cute food? That’s ok! When you have an hour, prep some snacks to keep in your fridge and pantry so you’ll always have something healthy to grab. Some good options that can be prepared ahead of time include:

    • Boiled eggs
    • Cubed cheese
    • Sliced fruit and veggies
    • Nuts
    • Hummus
    • Carrot sticks
    • String cheese
    • Greek yogurt

    When it comes right down to it, though, it’s ok to indulge in some food that’s not so healthy over the holidays. The important thing is to save the treats for big occasions, rather than having them in the house. It’s also a good idea to incorporate regular exercise into your family’s holiday traditions, whether that’s walking around the neighborhood caroling, taking a family hike, or just stepping out to look at the lights. Spending time getting some exercise outdoors will create happy family memories and close bonds, as well as helping to keep your kids healthy.

    As parents, we do everything we can to keep our kids healthy and safe. That includes choosing the right after school program, and if you’re in Succasunna, New Jersey area, you owe it to yourself to check out Creative Learning Academy. Our most sought-after preschool and afterschool programs in New Jersey provide an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities. Tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, our programs give children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

     

  • Thanksgiving Traditions from Around the World to Make Your Own

    What’s your Thanksgiving tradition? Do you eat a big meal with extended family and friends, or is it a more intimate gathering of only immediate family? Do you watch the parade on television, throw the football around, take an after dinner walk, or gather around the piano to sing songs? Some families have turkey, others eat a vegetarian feast. Some families travel long distances to see family they only see once every year or two, while others stay home and volunteer at a local charity, feeding those less fortunate than themselves. Whether your kids pull the wishbone or put on a Thanksgiving pageant, whether you prefer homemade cranberry sauce or sauce from the can with the lines still on it, there’s no wrong way to celebrate this holiday. But how do people celebrate it in other countries?

    To be honest, that’s a bit of a trick question, because Thanksgiving is really an American holiday. It’s predominately celebrated in the United States and Canada, and while it’s celebrated in some other places, like Australia, Liberia, and certain islands in the Caribbean, it was carried to those places by Americans. Unlike Christmas, which has a long history throughout the world, Thanksgiving was created to commemorate the “first Thanksgiving,” a harvest celebration shared by Pilgrims and their Native American neighbors.

    However, other countries do have similar holidays.

    • In Africa, the harvest festivals involve a lot of dancing and singing, performed by people in traditional outfits and masks. Two of the most popular harvest festivals in Africa are the Festival of Yams and the Homowo Festival, both held to offer thanks and celebrate the cultural heritage of different ethnic groups.
    • In Austria, the Harvest Festival is about enjoying life. It starts on Saint Leopold’s feast day, which begins the new wine season. During rural harvest times, Austrians give thanks by holding church services, parades, and country fairs.
    • In Bali, Nyepi is one of the most important festivals of the year. During this festival, all people must remain silent, and no is allowed to travel, work, or take part in indulgences. IT’s a time of purification, in the hope of good crops.
    • One of the biggest harvest festivals in China goes by several different names. The August Moon Festival, also known as the Mid-Autumn Festival or the Moon Cake Festival is held close to the autumnal equinox, and it ends with a big feast. People give Mooncakes to each other in gratitude and enjoy music and dancing. Families enjoy picnics and dinners, and children are treated to puppet shows and parades.
    • In the Netherlands, Martinmas is a harvest festival held on November 11. Churches are decorated with home-grown produce, people eat roast goose, and children march in parades carrying homemade lanterns.

    What can you take away from different cultures and the ways they celebrate festivals of gratitude? You might not want to remain silent like the Balinese, but perhaps you could use Thanksgiving as a time of reflection and pursuit of purity. Maybe you can use this time to celebrate your family’s cultural heritage or enjoy some music, dancing, and singing. You might put on a puppet show, decorate with produce, or help your children decorate lanterns and hold a parade.

    Learning about holiday celebrations around the world is a great way to celebrate diversity. Another way to promote an appreciation of others is to put your kids in a preschool or an afterschool program that’s diverse. At Creative Learning Academy, we serve families from all around the Succasunna, New Jersey area, so children in our program get to interact with people who they might not otherwise know, through school or the neighborhood. Our most sought-after preschool and afterschool programs in New Jersey provide an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities. Tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, our programs give children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

     

  • Fall Activities for the Family

    Learn the fall activities for the family

    Fall is a beautiful time of year when the weather begins to cool down and the leaves start to change color. It’s the perfect time to get outside with your family, now that the sweltering heat of summer has passed and the winter cold has not yet set in. What’s more, there are tons of fun things to do as a family during the fall, whether indoors or outside, in a large group or small.

    • Go apple picking or visit a pumpkin patch or fair. No matter where you live, you’re sure to find some place where there are fun activities like hayrides, bake sales, pumpkin carving, petting zoos, and more. Visiting some of these community events with your children is a great way to make memories.
    • Have a family game night. Family time doesn’t have to be expensive or elaborate. Break out the board games, pop some popcorn, and enjoy each others’ company with a little bit of friendly competition.
    • Drink hot cocoa around a fire. Whether it’s a fireplace in the living room, a fire pit in the backyard, or a bonfire on the beach, there’s nothing quite so cozy as relaxing by the fire with your family.
    • Enjoy the autumn leaves. There are so many ways to make the most of the colorful leaves in fall! Go on a walk or drive to find the most beautiful displays of color, or collect leaves with your children to press between wax paper or incorporate into crafts.
    • Decorate with home-made crafts. Fall gives us many excuses to decorate, whether it’s Halloween, Thanksgiving, or just the season itself. Decorate with leaves, pine cones, and gourds, string popcorn and berries into garlands, or make owls and turkeys out of paper bags and construction paper. There are tons of fun crafts to do with your kids, and it’s fun to decorate with childlike abandon.
    • Do some baking. What is more indicative of fall than the smell of fresh baked goods? Fresh breads, pies, muffins, cookies, or scones are all fun to bake together as a family, whether you prefer apple, pumpkin, pecan, or some other delicious fall flavor.
    • Have a picnic. Celebrate the cooler weather by visiting a beach or park for a picnic with your family. While you’re out, go on a nature scavenger hunt, challenging each other to find certain colors and shapes of leaves, rocks, shells, pinecones, or whatever else is handy in your part of the country.

    Fall is a fun season for spending time with your kids, keeping them engaged, active, and learning. If you’re in Succasunna New Jersey and you’re looking for a preschool program or after-school program that also focuses on those things, you owe it to yourself to check out Creative Learning Academy. Our most sought-after preschool and after school programs in New Jersey provide an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities. Tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, our programs give children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

     

  • Trick or treating safety tips

    Trick or Treating safety tips this halloween

    Ask kids about their favorite holidays and Halloween will almost certainly be near the top of the list. What could be more fun than dressing up in costume and heading door to door to ask for candy? For parents, though, the night can be a little bit nerve-wracking. Danger can seem to lurk around every corner, and keeping your children safe can feel like a difficult task. Fortunately, with a little bit of planning, you can have a Halloween that’s both fun and safe.

    • Decide on your route ahead of time. Trick-or-treating is fun until it’s not, and walking too far from home is one way to suck the fun right out of it. Avoid sore feet and short tempers by planning your route before you leave the house, sticking to familiar paths so you don’t get lost.
    • Make costumes safe. Choose costumes in light or bright colors, and use reflective tape or stickers to make your kids more visible. Use face paint and makeup, because masks can obstruct vision and make the costume hazardous. Make sure costumes are the right size, to reduce the risk of trips and falls. Steer clear of any props or accessories that are sharp or could be dangerous, and make sure makeup is non-toxic and wigs are flame-retardant.
    • Keep it comfy. Costumes should be comfortable enough for kids to freely move around, but perhaps the most important thing to remember is to put them in comfortable shoes. Kids’ feet shouldn’t hurt by the end of the night, and their shoes shouldn’t slow them down or trip them up.
    • Stick together. Kids under 12 need parental supervision while trick-or-treating, but even when they’re old enough to go out without you, they should never be alone. Use the buddy system to help kids stay safe, and make sure everyone in the group knows basic safety rules.
    • Teach kids to follow the rules of the road. Of course, your children know to stay on the sidewalks, look both ways before crossing, and use crosswalks when possible. They probably also know not to run across unfamiliar lawns in the dark, but it’s good to remind them of all the rules before they start out on Halloween, because in their excitement they might forget.
    • Sort the candy before anyone eats any of it. To be on the safe side, throw away any candy that’s open or looks iffy in any way. Be cautious about choking hazards for younger kids, like hard candy or gum.

    Keeping your kids safe on Halloween is a matter of following some simple rules. Keeping them safe and engaged means finding the right preschool and after school program, and if you’re in the Succasunna, New Jersey area, you owe it to yourself to check out Creative Learning Academy. Our most sought-after preschool and afterschool programs in New Jersey provide an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities. Tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, our programs give children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

     

  • Finding an Afterschool Program that Works for You and Your Child

    As we head back into the school year, many parents are seeking a place for their kids to go after school. It’s got to be somewhere convenient, and optimally, the afterschool program will provide transportation from the school. If you’re like most parents, you want a place where your kids will have fun, but you also want them to learn. It can be daunting to decide which program is best for your children, but there are some definite attributes the right after-school program should be able to check off your list.

    Finding an Afterschool Program for your child

    When choosing the best afterschool program, look for a place with:

    • An atmosphere that seems comfortable for your child. If you have a pretty good idea of the afterschool programs you’re considering, take your children along when you visit them. After all, this is a place where they will be spending many hours, so it should be a place that they will enjoy.
    • A healthy and safe environment. Think about staff to student ratios, the age of staff members, the condition of the building and equipment, and the general cleanliness of the facility. If your child will eat food prepared onsite, ask to see the kitchen so that you can be comfortable knowing it’s up to par. Look at the playgrounds, classrooms, and bathrooms. You want to find a center that’s well-maintained and in good condition.
    • Competent, friendly staff that cares about the kids. Visit while students are present, and note the interactions you observe between staff and children. Do the children seem engaged? Does the staff seem attentive? Are staff members available to help with homework and school projects? Are activities well-planned and supervised?
    • Opportunities for academic exploration. School may be over, but your child’s learning shouldn’t stop upon leaving the classroom. Look for an afterschool program where creativity and curiosity are encouraged, and kids are given ample opportunity to finish their homework, work on projects, and engage in activities that stimulate their minds.
    • Opportunities for physical activity, both indoor and outdoor. Is there a playground available, so that kids can interact and unwind? Are there organized games and group activities? Is there a rainy day plan, in case going outside is not an option? Look for a program that gives kids a balance of structure and free play, with time to get to know each other and opportunities to exercise their bodies.
    • Enrichment activities. What does the program offer that goes above and beyond the average daycare? Are extracurricular options available? Is the curriculum designed to provide stimulation as well as keeping kids entertained?

    If you’re looking for a great after school program, you owe it to yourself to check out Creative Learning Academy. One of the most sought-after afterschool programs in New Jersey, Creative Learning Academy’s school-aged program serves kids from kindergarten through 13 years old, providing an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities. Tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, our program gives children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

  • Why the Creative Curriculum® for Preschool Should Have you Excited about Back to School

    At Creative Learning Academy, we have always been invested in helping children grow and thrive. That’s why we work hard to provide hands-on experiences in a safe learning environment, where kids can explore the world around them and learn to be independent thinkers. Now, with the adoption of Creative Curriculum®, there’s even more to love about Creative Learning Academy.

    Why Creative Curriculum for Preschool is a must

    Creative Curriculum® is a comprehensive, research-based curriculum that uses play to help children learn and grow. Designed to foster the development of the whole child, this curriculum focuses on four areas of development: social/emotional, cognitive, physical, and language. This program uses teacher-led, small, and large group activities centered around 11 interest areas, and the curriculum helps teachers to promote child development through classroom organization, best practice teaching strategies, and engaging families in the learning process. Using blocks, dramatic play, toys and games, art, books, sand and water, music and movement, cooking, computers, outdoor play, and more, teachers help children to develop and apply new skills. Regular child assessments show parents and teachers how students are progressing, and online record-keeping tools allow teachers to maintain and organize child portfolios and effectively plan to support each individual child’s learning. Creative Curriculum® seeks to:

    • Promote learning through exploration and discovery. Children develop a deeper understanding of concepts when they’re permitted hands-on experiences. When they can explore and discuss, like young scientists, their natural curiosity is sparked, and they learn and grow.
    • Help teachers create a high-quality learning environment. The support of the Creative Curriculum® program allows teachers to provide an atmosphere in which children can thrive, and online tools help them measure their students’ progress.
    • Provide hands-on learning through project-based investigations. In large and small groups, children, facilitated by teachers, work together to solve problems and complete tasks, learning through doing.
    • Build children’s confidence, creativity, and critical thinking skills. When children are allowed to explore in this way, they become confident self-starters who use their imagination to find solutions. Learning to think critically is an important step in preparing them for a successful academic experience.

    Creative Curriculum® is a useful tool that helps Creative Learning Academy create an environment in which children of all ages can thrive. In a safe, fun, reliable space, children interact with each other, learning while they play. A healthy mix of games and academics leads to a balanced approach that helps children to succeed. If you’d like to learn more about our curriculum, call Creative Learning Academy. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

  • Five Things to Remember as the Kids Head Back to School

    If you’re like most parents with kids heading back to school, you are probably preoccupied with the necessary busywork of parenting. The lists of school supplies alone is daunting, and on top of that, you’ve got to go through your children’s wardrobes and see what they need in terms of school clothes. You’ve also got school registration to contend with and other paperwork that can sometimes seem endless. With all that’s going on, it’s not uncommon for a few things to slip through the cracks.

    Things to remember as the kids head back to school

    However, even in this busy time, there are some other things we hope you will remember.

    • Kids need a chance to ease back into school and other activities. It may all feel overwhelming to you, but remember, it can also be overwhelming for your kids. Try not to schedule too many extra activities for the first week of school, being mindful of the fact they may need a little bit of extra downtime right at the beginning of the year.
    • Your child may be anxious about things he or she hasn’t expressed to you. Try to set aside time for one on one interaction with each child, whether it’s during a walk while making supper, or over a friendly board game. Encourage your kids to talk about their hopes, fears, and expectations for the coming school year, and you may be surprised to learn some new information.
    • It may take some adjustment to get back into the swing of homework. Be patient in those first weeks, and encourage good organizational habits, like writing down assignments in an agenda, doing homework immediately after school, and checking the backpack every night to make sure nothing else needs to be done. Provide children with a well-lit, well-organized place to study, and a central location for notes, newsletters, and other important papers.
    • Some kids may need a listening ear after school. It’s easy to get busy in the afternoon and evening, but it’s important to remember that kids need a trusted adult in whom to confide. Make yourself available after school, letting your children know that you care what’s on their minds.
    • Healthy sleep and a good diet are crucial for back to school success. Starting a couple of weeks before school starts, get your kids back into the routine of regular bedtimes, regular waking times, and healthy meals and snacks. Remember, the average school-aged child needs 9 to 11 hours of sleep each night, teenagers need at least 8 to 10 hours, and preschoolers need anywhere from 9 to 16 hours, depending on age and the individual child. Planning your child’s schedule to accommodate this much sleep, and staying firm about bedtimes can prevent many health and behavioral issues.

    Another thing it’s important to remember as kids head back to schools is the importance of the right afterschool care for your kids. If you’re looking for a great after school program, you owe it to yourself to check out Creative Learning Academy. One of the most sought-after afterschool programs in New Jersey, Creative Learning Academy’s school-aged program serves kids from kindergarten through 13 years old, providing an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities. Tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, our program gives children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.

  • Fun and Educational Ways to Ease out of Summer

    When it’s time to go back to school, you want your kids to be prepared. In addition to having the right school supplies, it’s important for their minds to be ready to jump back into the routine, easily getting back to completing schoolwork and homework. On the other hand, kids need time to relax during the summer months, not just physically but mentally. Fortunately, you don’t have to make your kids do heaving homework during the summer. In fact, there are some fun things you can do with them to promote learning and get them ready to go back to school.

    While educational games can be useful, games don’t have to be specifically educational to promote learning. Depending on your child’s age and stage of development, you can find fun games that promote various types of learning.

    • To teach strategy:
      • Clue
      • Mastermind
      • Monopoly
      • Mancala
      • Settlers of Catan
      • Chess
    • To promote literacy:
      • Boggle
      • Scrabble
      • Bananagrams
      • Hedbandz
      • Apples to Apples
    • To build math skills:
      • Yahtzee
      • Sequence
      • Rummikub
      • Qwirkle

    You can also promote your children’s intellectual development by engaging them in conversations and tasks that help them in everyday life. Talk about current events with older kids, encouraging them to express their opinions, draw conclusions, and problem-solve, thinking of creative solutions to the issues of the day. At any age, kids can help around the house and learn. Helping in the kitchen is particularly useful: measuring and counting, scooping, pouring, mixing and chopping help them develop math skills, reasoning skills, and manual dexterity. Another good way to productively interact with your kids is just to discuss the upcoming school year. In a low-pressure way, perhaps while engaged in a fun activity, talk about your child’s hopes, fears, and expectations.

    Making a habit of being active outdoors helps your children both mentally and physically. Being active together gives you and your kids an opportunity for quality one on one time, which strengthens your bond, builds memories, and allows you time to impart wisdom about the world. Being outside also helps kids connect with nature, and that is good for their brains. Unstructured time outdoors allows kids to explore the world around them, learning about the earth and receiving a kind of stimulation of their senses that they can’t get inside.

    As you’re preparing your kids to go back to school, don’t forget to enroll them in an afterschool program that’s challenging, interesting, and fun. Creative Learning Academy had one of the most sought-after afterschool programs in New Jersey, with a school-aged program that serves kids from kindergarten through eighth grade. Providing an integrated curriculum full of fun, engaging, safe activities, tailored to suit each age, grade, and stage, we give children time to relax and interact while still ensuring that their homework is completed and their education supported. For more information, visit our website or call 973.541.8241 today.