A Month of Active Learning Games

There are two types of learning; passive and active. Passive learning is when you sit and read a book, listen to a lecture, etc. anytime someone else is teaching you something. Active learning is when you are actively participating in your learning, getting hands on, or physical. A well-rounded education includes both, but we often get sucked into the passive learning methods and forget about the active side. The following 31 activities can be done by any homeschooling teacher to round out their childs learning, or by any parent at anytime to enjoy playing and learning with their children.

Observation Games – These games are good for building observational skills.

  1. Hot and Cold (with an object) – using a small object one person hides it and everyone else goes looking, while the hider gives hot and cold instructions. The first to find it gets to be the next hider.
  2. Objects on a Tray – Bring in a tray with 20 items on it for 1 minute, then take it away, and have everyone else try to write or list all that they saw.
  3. Who am I? in 20 questions – One person thinks of an item and the other gets 20 questions to try to discover what it is.
  4. Copy my shape – One person uses 10-20 popsicle sticks to create a shape or shapes, and then the others playing have to try to recreate it.
  5. Car Walk – Walk around your neighborhood and list off all the cars, or bikes, or dogs that you can find.

Math Games – These games help build on any math skills your child may be learning at/during school.

  1. Geometry Walk – Take your child on a walk and look for specific solid and flat shapes like; spheres, cones, boxes, squares, octagon, hexagons, etc.
  2. Ruler Game – Give your child a ruler and a pad of paper and have them find 10 objects to measure.
  3. Cooking Cookies – Practice liquid and solid measurements with your child by baking together and then enjoying the deliciousness afterward
  4. Jump Rope Numbers – Jump rope with your child and each time your feet hit the ground be counting by 1s, 2s, 3s, 5s, 10s, ect
  5. Shaving Cream math – Squirt a bunch of shaving cream onto your table or desk and practice writing math problems (or spelling words, or anything else you want) in the cream
  6. Play store – Practice money values and making change by playing store with your children.
  7. Yahtzee – Just a fun numbers game.
  8. Which number am I? Greater than Less than – One person picks a number and the other has to try to guess it in 10 guesses or less, using the greater than less than hints.

Science Games – Science games are great for learning and discovering the world with your child.

  1. Catch a Spider Web – Take a black piece of construction paper outside while the dew is still out and catch a spider web, then immediately sprinkle powdered sugar on it.
  2. Hike – Take your children on a day hike and try to identify different plants and animals
  3. Casting Prints – Using baby powder and glue like this site here, you can make castings from prints outside and then try to identify what made them.
  4. Thumb Ball – Through this site here, you can find different science (or any topic) thumb balls to toss back and forth with your child to keep the learning conversation going

Language Building Game – From vocab to spelling language building games can help build on new things your child is learning at/during school.

  1. Spelling Leap Frog – leap-frog with your kids alternating letters on your spelling words
  2. Vocab Bingo – put all the vocab words for the week on a homemade bingo card and have fun.
  3. Spanish Vocab Stickers – using premade or homemade spanish vocab cards have your child use tape and put them up around your house with the window card on the window etc.
  4. Chalk Vocab – use sidewalk chalk to get your kids motivated about their vocab words
  5. FInish Line Letters – For children just learning their letters, put large letters up on a wall and then have your whole family do races. Just before it begins have one person yell out a letter to race to.
  6. Alphabet Game – picking any theme you like have each person say something that starts with the next letter in the alphabet. (Animals: Anaconda, Bird, Cat, etc)

Coordination Games – These games can help build anyones coordination.

  1. Obstical Course – Tell your child they have 10 minutes to build an obsticle course then do the obsticle course, then have them make another.
  2. Marco Polo out side of water – Put on a blind fold and on your hands and knees play marco polo in the grass
  3. No Ghost Out – this is really just hide and seek in the dark. One person starts out saying, “one o’clock no ghost out tonight, two o’clock no ghost out tonight ….. 12 o’clock the ghosts are out!” then they go hunting for everyone else.
  4. Three Legged Friends – Tie your leg to your kids and try going on a walk.
  5. Egg Spoon Race – Race your child with spoons and eggs
  6. Socks on a tarp – Throw out a tarp and some water, put on socks you don’t mind getting dirty, and work on sliding back and forth trying to stay on your feet.

Listening Games – These games test and build a childs listening skills.

  1. Telephone – Tell your child something silly like, “Doggies jump rope in spring” and have her go tell someone else who can tell someone else then tell you.
  2. Draw my shape – Sit back to back with your child and have them draw a combination of shapes as you draw them.

Disclaimer – The specific origins of each of these games in unknown and I am not claiming to have invented them. The list was compiled by myself, my friends, other homeschooling moms and traditional teachers.

Other posts to look forward to will be: A month of quick kids crafts, A month of simple science experiments, Cook 10 things with me, How to build lap-books, and 15 fun field trips!


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