For every week this summer I've chosen a different country for the kids to learn about. There are many, many reasons I decided to do this, but I'll share just a few. 1-I am NOT very good about keeping a structure in my children's days, and I figured a flexible learning project like this would give me a baseline of educational things to do on a daily basis. 2-I am a giant nerd and when I was a kid I would have loved something like this.
Our first week was Egypt. Honestly, if the kids were older, this was a topic we could have kept on for months, I'm sure. Between ancient history and modern culture, there is SO much to learn. But, my kids are 3 and 5 and their attention span for learning activities is about 20 minutes at a time, so a week was plenty.
We made Egyptian flags.
David practiced writing.
This craft project was a big hit. We made "pharoah masks," with these instructions as a guide, using masks I bought from Party City and leftover cardboard. Clearly we were not going for perfection here, just fun.
Here are the finished products. David got the concept of adding stripes around the sides, but Norah's is just scribbly 3 year old painting (though the less messy parts of hers were finished by David in true big brother "let me help you because I am big" style.)
(Please note they are wearing their pajamas because afternoon baths were necessary after playing with acrylic paint for an hour.)
Some other things we did last week: I made falafel for dinner one night. David turned up his nose, but Norah ate a little. I tried to get them to watch a Rick Steve's travel show one day but David deemed it "boring, like for grown ups" so I didn't push the issue. David drew some pyramids. We talked about sand and desert animals.
We ended up reading the same 2 storybooks over and over: What's the Matter, Habibi?, a cute story about a camel and his owner, and The Littlest Frog, a funny take on the part of the biblical plagues. This book, Egypt (Letters from Around the World) was nice, a non fiction book featuring a young girl and what her daily life is like. It didn't hold my kids attention that well, but would be great for older kids.
I learned this week about what my 3 and 5 year old can handle, so I think in the future we'll focus on more hands-on activities, and storybooks about our different countries. Next week is India... I'm excited to make some naan bread!