Thursday, 30 June 2011

School's out!

Well, yes, school IS officially out, and summer arrived all at the same time. I have so many ideas and activities prepared for my vacationers, I cannot wait to do it all with them.

I have been busy mostly preparing practical life activities for these reasons:

  • I think practical life activities are so made to be done at home. Practical life is just learning about life in a household and within a family.
  • I know my oldest son is about to be over with these. He is just about to turn 6 (I am talking about a few days here), and I can see that many of those activities don't keep him concentrated as long as before: he masters many of those tasks and they are not as challenging to him anymore. These task are just ingrained into him: we don't have to remind him anymore of many of those activities, they get done when they need to be done, and the way he practiced over and over again. I have prepared advanced practical life activities for him, but I am anxious as how I will be able to make that work with a younger crowd that will be eager to try them out also (but that might not be ready yet)
  • I have a 4 yo, and a just about toddler who are still and will be (respectively) quite interested in those tasks
  • I think practical life activities in a home setting really make parents ponder on how to really organize your house with children in mind, so that it is functional, adapted, and respectful of their needs. (well, it sure does for me! It is an eye opening experience, and consequently, a reorganizing one)
  • I have seen and experience the benefits of these activities with my soon to be 6 yo. See first point...Not having to bribe, priceless
  • I see my kids being very independent for many common tasks, and they seem happy about it
  • I enjoy having them to participate with me in our household tasks. It makes them so less mechanical and dare I say boring?

So what better way to start the summer holidays while practicing making a suitcase? THey sure thought that was a neat idea!

I gathered 2 littles suitcases

and my DD's doll clothes

I also gave them both a folding mat . They had a list of things to put in the suitcase, things they have already folded before at laundry time: Pants, shirts, wool cardigan and pj's

I presented how to logically pack the suitcase, and this was their work:

and this lead to an interesting afternoon of packing and unpacking suitcases.
Yes, they are ready for vacations!


  1. Your suitcases are gorgeous. This is a great activity that would keep them busy all day. I know what you are saying about practical life activities. I am concerned that as my children get older they may not be so interested in helping!

  2. Thank you! When I saw them, I knew they could have many purposes. I am planning to eventually turn them into activity cases (one for exploration of nature, with magnifiying glass, notebooks, pencils, nature booklets...thing to take on the book for nature exploration) and the other one as a knitting kit. Mariah as Playful learning has suitcases like that, and they totally inspired me!

    As for practical life, I think this is when learning those tasks at a young age aids. Imagine trying to have them learn that when they are already not really interested in helping out? And as I was saying, since practical life activities are part of our days and not a special activity time for themselves, they are just part of our rhythm, and of the way we live. (but you know, they still have theirs days... ;) )

  3. What a great summertime practical life. Most families take a trip or go on holiday during the summer so the child has a point of interest since it's a part of their real world. This is definitely a "homework" suggestion that I would offer to parents when I return to the classroom.