March 5, 2014

Ideas from the Peel Board for quality family time during March Break

March break can be fun-filled for parents and students. We all learn best when the learning is fun and there’s no reason why children should not continue to learn at home through their March break activities.

“Turning everyday activities into educational experiences over the break helps encourage student success,” says Patricia Stellick, coordinating principal of elementary education. “With some free time and imagination, there are many approaches to learning that can take place at home and in the community.”

Here are some tips for parents to keep their children happy and engaged during the break:

• Explore Apps for educational games and participate with your child
• Get caught up in organizing all your photos by category on your computer.  Have your child help decide where the photos go and have your child help you in the task. Have children write letters and family updates to cousins, grandparents and friends. These may be done by email with photos attached from the albums the two of you just sorted!
• Go to the Peel Art Gallery, Museum and Archives (PAMA) with your child and when you come home, encourage some artistic renditions. You may have a budding Picasso on your hands! Why not paint or draw along with your child?
• Encourage your child to start a collection to help them sort by category and practise organizing things. This can be a collection of anything the child is interested in - rocks, stamps, marbles or other items.
• Ask your child to take charge of family recycling (get containers, wash the jars, stack papers, etc.).
• Visit the library together and select a book the two of you can enjoy and read together.
• Read the daily newspapers weather map and check how the weather changes daily throughout the world; access the same information on the Web.
• Visit the Maple Sugar Bush at the Jack Smythe Field Centre. More information is available by calling them at 905-877-7771.

March break is also a great opportunity for volunteering. For example, you and your child could pay a visit to a nursing home, animal shelter, fire station or a hospital to show children what happens at these places. Students are encouraged to start early in accumulating the 40 hours of volunteer community service that is required for secondary school graduation. March Break is a perfect opportunity to complete some of those hours. More information on the "Your Time Counts" program is available on the Peel Board's website at www.peelschools.org in the "Student Stuff" section.

The "Help your child have a good March break" parent tip sheet is available in the Parents section at http://wwwnew.peelschools.org/parents/helpyourchild/Pages/default.aspx

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Media contact:  Patricia Stellick, Coordinating Principal, Elementary, 905-890-1010 ext. 2548, [email protected]

Reference: Anne-Marie Brown, Communications Officer, 905-890-1010 ext. 2626, [email protected]

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