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We've spent the past few months re-thinking what screen time can be, and developing a collection of live online classes designed to keep elementary schoolers connected with friends on creative learning adventures.  
 

We're helping families bring the supportive classroom mentality of enrichment into their homes both on and off-line this summer.

 
Through our lens as working parents, we've put together 5 ideas for free, off-line enrichment activities to do at home, that empower elementary schoolers to take their natural curiosity to the next step, independently. 
 
Enjoy these easy, yet purposeful ways to bring the benefits of enrichment home, no online class required. 
 

1. Jr Photographers

One way for students to gain digital literacy and practice self-direction is to take thoughtful photos with a smartphone around the house or yard and share them with the family later in the day. 
 
Pick a theme for the shots like "tiny things in our home" or "stuffed animal portraits". Older children can publish photos to an online gallery or blog, add captions and share a slideshow. Find more ideas for a kids photography project here.
 
2. Budding Film Critics
Watching a movie and reviewing it helps flex effective listening and communication skills.  Younger viewers can draw a picture of their favorite moments or characters, while those with writing skills can answer a few questions like these: 
 
  • What is the message of this movie? Do you agree or disagree with it?
  • If you had a chance to ask a character in this movie a question, what would it be?
  • Would you recommend this movie to a friend? Explain your reasons. 
Find more thought provoking movie analysis questions for kids here.
 
3.  Senior Pen Pals
Many seniors sheltering in place at assisted living and skilled nursing facilities are isolated from friends and family.  Children can make a big impact with a small act of kindness when they write and address letters or draw pictures to mail to seniors in their local community and beyond. 
 
For help getting started, read these thoughtful tips for writing to seniors. 
 
Please share your cards and letters with us on Instagram so we can inspire others to spark communication, connection and kindness with our elders.
 
4.  Visual Librarians 
Challenge your child to organize their books by color.  This simple exercise in visual thinking and sorting helps even the youngest elementary schoolers extend learning about colors and independently practice problem solving skills.
 
5.  Young Activists 
Encourage elementary schoolers to guide and lead others using their voices and imaginations.  We recently participated in A Family Day of Action for Black Lives where children were empowered to create bold chalk drawings, poems and messages, showing what change they want to see in the world.  
 
Whether it's creating a driveway chalk poem using the words power, justice, unity, circle, listen, stand, respect and heal or making protest signs for the yard, themselves and their stuffies to hold, children can honor Black and Brown lives lost to racism and spark conversations and empathy in their own communities.
 
Are you an educator with an enrichment curriculum for K-5 students?  We'd love to hear from you!  Learn about teaching online with Homeroom this summer and become part of our village of educators, families & schools.

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