- My Primary Tutor
5 activities to get you outside this May half-term
It's half term and the weather is looking like it might even be a bit warmer this week! Add to that the fact that it's National Children's Gardening Week and it seemed like a good idea to post some ideas to help you get the kids out and into the sunshine!
At My Primary Tutor we firmly believe in educating the whole child and that means that while academics have their place (and it's pretty important one at that!) children, especially primary aged children, learn a great deal from just being in the world and experiencing it. Half-term is a time to relax and to spend time with family. Being outdoors is proven to be GREAT for our mental health. Let's get out in the garden and have some fun this week!
Make a scarecrow.
If you're growing some veg this summer, it's not far off time to plant it out and, if your experience of vegetable growing is anything like ours, it's a constant competition to stop the birds from getting at those juicy-looking tomatoes before you do!
Making a scarecrow is simpler than you might think, and it's SO much fun, because it gives you and your children a chance to indulge your more creative side and make a real character! Who will your scarecrow be? A hero like Marcus Rashford? A villain like a wicked witch? Something more esoteric like a representation of yourselves? A scarecrow family would be fantastic, and could become a real talking point around your neighborhood!
The RHS have some very simple instructions for creating your scarecrow here.
Make a bird feeder
Bird feeders are incredibly simple to make, and your kids (and you) will LOVE watching all the birds come to eat the food you provide!
There are so many learning opportunities here too - the design and technology element involved in the building but also the science -you could investigate what different kinds of seed are in the bird food as well as grabbing a bird book and identifying who comes for their breakfast every morning!
Once again, the RHS have some great instructions for doing this here, and we love this bird spotting book - ideal for children.
Do some rock painting!
This is SUCH a fun activity - from finding suitable rocks (they need to be the right size and shape) to deciding on the design. You could even use the rocks as plant labels if you're doing some seed-sowing!
There is also the opportunity to take your beautifully painted rocks and hide them out and about for someone else to find and re-hide - it's a fun game and kids love keeping an eye out for them while you're out and about. The best place to look for your local group is on Facebook; they are usually called "_____ Rocks" and are a place to upload pictures of the rocks you find. Here's my local one - Shropshire Rocks.
Here are some super-simple instructions from the dedicated chaps at the National Children's Gardening Week.
Create some cascading strawberries
We LOVE this activity because it involves repurposing something which might usually go in the bin - an old bit of drainpipe. You fill it with soil, cut holes along the length to pop the strawberry plants in, and then work out where to stand it! The instructions don't mention it, but we'd also recommend some netting to stop the birds from getting to the strawbs before you do *shakes fist*.
Grow some cress heads!
This one is a stone-cold classic - we've all done it at some point or another and it never gets any less fun! You can use eggshells or the feet of some old tights, you can grow cress or grass or even pea shoots - we think something edible doubles the fun, though. Just like the other activities, there is a wealth of learning to be had here too. The science aspect is obvious - learning about what plants need to grow - you could even turn it into a bit of an experiment by putting your heads in different places around the house and see how it affects the growth. There's also a lovely creative aspect though as the children design and make their heads.
Some lovely instructions here (as if you need them!)