Here are some game ideas for those looking for inspiration. These do not need any unusual tools or skills, just a sense of fun.
Games are a great way to make learning enjoyable. Try to make these games the right level for the children playing to keep them fun
Fun and Games
Fun and Games
How to Decorate
Use paints, chalk or pens directly onto your model.
If young children and are using paints consider limiting the number of colours to 2 primary colours at a time ( blue, yellow or red). Why? Because when colours mix they change and if more than two of these colours mix the result is brown which can be a disappointing outcome after loads of work.
Show children how this works and what colours they get when the available colours mix, then they can choose their own colour scheme.
Another option is to use our printables to colour in first before sticking onto the model. This is still creative and takes time but will give children with less experience a lovely outcome every time.
Lay out a number of toys in the game play area, this can be either inside or outside (in the right weather), just make sure you have enough space for running around.
Announce how many toys you want your child to collect and bring back to you. Encourage your child as they rush around getting the correct number of toys.
Change this game to match your child's ability. For example;
Only lay out the number of toys that your child can count to.
Or if your child is learning their numbers for each round tell them how many toys you have put down and help them count as the collect them.
Or you could add to the fun by timing how long they take or add a mathematical component like addition so they have to work out the number first.
Keep this fun, and don't make it too hard. See this as a way to assist learning rather than understanding the basics. Let kids add ideas to how you the game can go.
Decide on a point and get your kid to run to it and back and time how long it takes them.
Race your kid to a fixed point. If one of you is much faster then have fun inventing ways to handicap that faster racer until you are equally matched or too exhausted to move. Handicaps could involve detours to collect an item, or having to do a star-jump every 5 steps. Have fun creating your own silly races.
If there are a number of children play a game where you set a time, say 10 seconds and measure how far they get. Place down a marker for each person and return to the starting line. Set the timer again and see if they can beat the last try and set down a second marker.
No need for equipment, although if you have some this is a great opportunity to use it.
Map out a course, either in your heads or with small markers.
Locate points around the course and assign an activity for that location. This could be something active like doing a star-jump or handstand, or it could be remembering a certain word and shouting it out, or it maybe holding a pose for 20 seconds like standing on one leg.
Get the kids to run around the course and egg them on to make lots of effort.
Recruit your children into coming up with imaginative things to do, encourage them to be silly and playful so its funny as well as tiring.
Take around 10 pieces of paper (fewer for younger kids). On one side draw or write something down, its fine to repeat things. It could be a number, a name of a family member, a banana, anything. If you already have suitable cards use these, or get the kids to draw things too.
Lay the papers down, securing them in place if needed.
Call out one of the things you drew and wait while one kid searches for it. If you are playing with more than one kid let them take turns to search.
After finding and looking at the wanted piece of paper put it back in place face down.
Repeat the game calling out all the different things in random order. After a while your child will remember where each one is.
Once it gets too easy mix up the papers and start again (or take a break).
Learn the Countries
Teach you child about different countries in the world. One way would be to play the assault course game and every activity location is a country where they have to say 'hello' in that countries language(s), or name the capital city. If you don't know them yourself (because who does??) this is a great opportunity to teach your children how to learn. You could look for a book and read it as a team, or you could research together on the internet.
Another game is that you could lay out paper with the names of the different countries and make them plan the shortest route to a country making a certain number of stops along the way.
Alternatively the memory game would be great with countries written on the paper.
Use these games to interest children to learn more about countries. If you want a quiet time you could sit with you child in the aeroplane and look at an atlas, read a story about travel or ask your child to make one up for you.
Learn the Planets
Use the memory game format to learn the planet names. This would be great with pictures so children can see what the different planets look like.
Alternatively lay the papers out with the pictures showing in the correct order of the planets from the sun. Standing on the suns location play a variety of games, e.g. calling out a planet name and the kid has to run to that planet and back. Or they could count which number that planet is from the sun
The planets could be locations on an assault course where you have to name the planet when you reach it before you do the assigned activity.
Sitting quietly in the spaceship you could use the opportunity to read a book about space together, read a story or ask your child to make up a story to tell you.