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Learning outside school articles

Halloween image from bigstock
6 low-cost ideas for a happy Halloween
Halloween is an exciting time for children but many parents worry about the cost of costumes, decorations, treats and parties. With the cost-of-living crisis putting the pressure on, how can we make it a memorable holiday for our kids with minimum damage to our bank accounts? We’ve come up with some ideas that might help…
Mother and child opening gift
Best SEN gifts: sensory needs
Finding the right gift that will bring joy and comfort can be a challenge, and it can feel like the world of children’s toys is lacking in the special educational needs (SEN) department. But the market is slowly changing, and sensory toys are becoming a popular choice for children of all neurological backgrounds.
Daily email programme
How the daily learning programme works
Whether you're taking your child out of school for a period, setting out on your home education journey or simply looking for extra activities to boost your child's learning, here's why the daily learning programme could be the right fit for you...
5 ways to develop your child's learning style before they start school
Developing a learning style before starting school
Most of us want to give our children every advantage when they start primary school — it’s only natural. Finding the best school, taking an interest in feedback from teachers and doing homework is all great, but the best thing you can do for your child is to help them develop the key characteristics of being an effective learner.
Best books for inclusion and diversity
Best books for inclusion and diversity
Creating an environment that promotes inclusivity and diversity at home and in the classroom is incredibly important, but how can we do this? A great place to start is with one of the oldest and most powerful tools for opening minds there is – books!
Home habits to boost your child's school performance
5 surprising home habits that affect your child’s learning
What are the very best ways to support your child's learning and help them reach their full potential? In an extract from their handbook, A Parent’s Guide to The Science of Learning, Edward Watson and Bradley Busch suggest practical ways to help your child improve how they think, feel and behave in school, all backed by psychological research.
Best laptops for secondary school
Best laptops for secondary school
Thinking of investing in a laptop for your Year 7 child? We asked Y11 computing student Tom to test a few different secondary school laptop options so you can get the best model your budget allows and set your child up for efficient homework and remote learning (at the right price!).
Forest school activity ideas
Forest school fun for kids
Learn to read clouds and enjoy some splashy water games in the great outdoors with an extract from Forest School Wild Play by Jane Worroll and Peter Houghton.
News and current affairs with children
How to get your child interested in the news
We asked the experts at Newsround and First News for their advice on raising a child with a keen interest in current affairs.
What children can learn from magic tricks
What children can learn from magic tricks
Abracadabra! Here's how learning magic tricks can help your child develop skills that will last a lifetime.
Time for School by Daisy Upton
6 literacy and numeracy early learning games
Looking for some quick and easy learning activities to do with your child? In our extract from Five Minute Mum: Time For School, parent and best-selling author Daisy Upton (AKA Five Minute Mum) introduces you to simple, fun five-minute games to support Reception and Key Stage 1 children through their first years at school.
Wildlife projects for children
9 wildlife projects for kids
Help your child learn about and look after native species with these great outdoor activities.
Why jigsaw puzzles are great for kids
Why jigsaw puzzles are great for kids
Jigsaws can help your child develop many physical and mental skills, so why not get one out this weekend?
Best nursery rhymes and fairy tales apps for kids
Best nursery rhymes and fairy tales apps for kids
For many children, nursery rhymes and fairy tales are the first step on the road to independent reading. We’ve rounded up 10 of our favourite traditional song and story apps for pre-school, Reception and beyond.
Zero budget activities for kids
9 ways to keep your child busy on zero budget
Feeling the pinch? These brilliant ideas will banish boredom without testing your bank balance.
Benefits of learning to code for kids
Coding benefits for kids
​Why is your child learning to code in primary school and why is coding an important skill for their future? We asked the experts at Bright Little Labs to explain why coding can and should be a part of a complete education for a modern child, and how to mix coding, stories, art and fun.
Best brain-training apps for kids
Best brain-training apps for kids
Help your child develop essential skills such as problem-solving, critical thinking and spatial awareness with these brilliant brain games.
Road safety for tweens: the parents' guide
Road safety for tweens: the parents' guide
Travelling to school or to see friends alone is an important milestone for children at the end of primary school and moving to secondary, but pedestrian accidents peak at age 12. Help your child learn to travel safely with the Child Accident Prevention Trust's road safety action plan for tweens.
Summer challenges for primary school children
The best summer challenges for kids
Help your child keep those brain cells active throughout the holidays with these brilliant activities, from reading to computer coding.
Develop your child's reading skills
11 ways to take your child's reading to the next level
Once you’ve encouraged your child's love of stories and boosted their confidence in their reading skills, it’s time to develop those strategies which really make your child ‘a reader’.
Summer science projects for Y6 to Y7 transition
Summer science projects for Y6 to Y7 transition
Help your child prepare for secondary-school-level work by supporting them with a summer science project. Caitlin Brown, Education Manager at the British Science Association, explains why devising, completing and presenting their own science investigation is one of the best ways for your child to prepare for Year 7 this summer – and great fun, too!
What is unschooling?
What is unschooling?
Ever fancied ditching school and letting your child learn through following their interests? The unschooled approach to home education could be right for you.
Best children’s books by Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) authors
Best ethnically diverse children’s books
Bookseller Valentina Alexander of MyBookbasket.com shares some of her favourite children’s books that celebrate ethnic diversity.
Keeping your child motivated with home learning
Keeping up the momentum with home learning
Struggling to keep your child on track with their home learning? Try these techniques for giving their motivation a boost.
Best cookery books for kids
Best cookery books for kids
Help your child master kitchen skills that’ll set them up for life with these brilliant cookbooks for every age. From cookery basics to elaborate bakes, they’ll enjoy getting stuck into a whole range of family-friendly recipes.
Best poetry home education resources
Best poetry home education resources
Do you love poetry, or wish you had more time to explore it? Introduce your family to the delights of the spoken word with this selection of wonderful free poetry resources. Classic poems for children, performance poetry videos, interactive poetry games and kids' poetry podcasts: everything you need to encourage a love of verse is available at the click of a button.
How to make online tutoring work for your child
How to make online tutoring work for your child
Is your child preparing for the 11+ or getting support with general studies? Two tutors share their advice on making the most of online tutoring.
Best virtual museum experiences for families
6 of the best virtual museum adventures for families
Why not visit a museum from the comfort of home? Whether you are a history enthusiast or an art connoisseur-in-the-making, there is a virtual resource for you! Kaitlin Fritz, co-founder of Musemio, outlines 6 top virtual experiences from across the globe.
Best numeracy home schooling resources
Best numeracy home education resources
Boost your child's confidence with all aspects of maths with our pick of the best home education numeracy resources: games, hands-on activities, video explanations, online lessons and downloadable workbooks, all available to access for free.
Night-time family learning activities
Night-time family learning activities
Rethink bedtime and reclaim your evenings as family fun time with light-and-shadows art, lantern-making and star (or satellite) gazing. From dusk until dawn, there's a wealth of learning opportunities to be found in the darkness – and lots of family fun to be had.
Best literacy resources
Best literacy resources
Whether your child is just learning to read and print letters or looking for ways to put their creative writing skills to the test, we've rounded up some fantastic resources to help them practise phonics, grammar, story-writing and comic-creating at home. Plus there are loads of different ways to connect with authors and listen to stories.
Safe video calling for kids
Communicating online: how to keep your child safe
Worried about whether apps like Zoom and Houseparty are safe for your primary school child? Here’s our advice, with help from internet security experts ESET.
Best wildlife and nature home education resources
Best wildlife and nature home education resources
Watch wildlife webcams, construct habitats, grow seeds on a windowsill and make eco-friendly choices – we've rounded up the best nature and wildlife home education resources to help your child explore the world without straying from home.
Best science home education resources
Best science home education resources
You don't need a Bunsen burner, a chemistry set or a science degree to share these STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) activities with your child at home. Whether you want to try a hands-on experiment, ask an expert some questions via video chat or play some interactive games, you'll find lots of science home education options in this round-up of resources.
Life skills your child should learn
19 life skills you can teach your child at home
Learning isn't just about mastering spellings and times tables. A lot takes place outside the classroom, and spending some time teaching practical life skills at home will help set your child up for the future.
Family outdoor learning activities
Easy outdoor learning adventures
Exploring the outside world is an important part of a child's learning experience, but it's not always easy when you have space and time limitations. We've compiled a list of fun, simple suggestions to keep families connected to nature without having to go far or break the bank.
Best kids' activity packs to download
Best kids' activity packs to download
Top up the resource bank and keep the kids busy at home with reading, puzzles, crafting, science and other screen-free activities. They're all available to download for free and you won't need any special equipment, so head off the "I'm bored!" moans and buy yourself a few moments of peace so you can get some of your own work done!
Best geography home education resources
Best geography home education resources
Criss-cross the globe, visit landmarks and even venture out into space with our pick of the best geography home education resources. Whether you want to chat to an explorer, take on a massive world colouring project or learn amazing facts about every nation on Earth, you'll find plenty of KS1 and KS2 geography activities on our list.
Best coding home education resources
Best coding home education resources
From Minecraft modding to block coding, Python programming and robot building, your child's computing education doesn't need to stop during school closures. Whether they're new to coding or an experienced programmer, we've picked the best resources available online to keep them engaged and learning.
Best children's books about coronavirus
Best children's books about coronavirus
Even adults are finding it hard to get their heads around the new "normal" – so how can you help your child understand how and why the coronavirus pandemic has up-ended our lives? Whether you're reading to a preschooler or want your tween to have scientifically-accurate facts, these free, downloadable eBooks will help you explain COVID-19 to kids.