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Happy family standing next to table full of ornaments on it, hugging and enjoying Christmas together.

Creative Ways to Keep Kids Engaged and Learning During Holiday Breaks

Every holiday season gives us a chance to spend more time with our families. Some parents worry that their children might not learn as much if they are not at school. You might want to pull out the worksheets and learning apps, but most teachers strongly believe that students should rest and not do work similar to what they would do in the classroom during breaks. Kids need to rest and recover. But that doesn’t mean you can’t offer a lot of fun, educational things that happen away from screens at home. These ideas from one of the best school age programs in Brookeville, MD, will help your kid learn while the holidays are over.

Time Capsules

Are there important events or successes in your child’s life this year that you want to remember for a long time? Making a time capsule could be a fun project that celebrates current events and lets you and your child see how much they’ve changed when you open it again. That is up to you, but pictures, letters to themselves or a family member, and copies of certificates or report cards are some things that could go in the capsule. The Library of Congress has helpful information on choosing a storage bin, where to keep it, and how to keep things from breaking down.

Holiday DIY Invention Box

Make your child an invention box and let them use the things you put inside to make anything they want. This will spark their imagination. To begin, get a box made of wood or cardboard to use as the idea box. Add holiday decorations, stickers, glitter, or anything else your kids would like that sparkles and shines. Put a lot of different craft items in the box. You can look for red, green, white, silver, or gold ones.

You can fill the box with any craft items around the house. When your child comes up with an “invention,” help them use the materials to make a sculpture, item, wreath, or musical instrument. You can use the paper to make beautiful Christmas drawings!

making christmas decorations

Vision Board

Families can show their hopes and dreams for the future by making vision boards. Your child will need a poster board, scissors, glue, magazines, paper, and ink to print pictures from the internet to start this project. With those tools, they can assemble a collection of pictures showing their goals for the year. After that, they can put it somewhere in their room to help them remember what they need to do. It’s always a good idea to talk about those goals so that you can figure out how to help each other reach them.


Holiday baking is one of the best things about the season. You can make everything from gingerbread houses to sugar cookies. Also, let’s be honest: kids are most interested in freshly baked treats. But did you know that you can sneak in some learning while they’re baking? It’s been said that cooking is an art and baking is a science. Your child can learn about science in a fun and satisfying way by helping you make cookies or a cake from scratch. They will also learn skills that will help them understand how things work and the world around them better.

Kids baking during winter break with cookie cutters

Learn About Holidays from Other Countries

Many different holidays are celebrated all over the world, and winter is a great time for you and your child to learn about them. Your child could learn more about other people’s lives, understand how important it is to include everyone and see the value in the variety all around them if you take the time to learn about different cultures and traditions.

Holiday Book Swap

Do you have a group of mom friends whose kids are about the same age? If you don’t, talk to the parents at your child care in Brookeville, MD, and join a neighborhood message board to meet new people. Call your local library and ask if they have a book swap or something similar planned for this month.

As soon as you get to know a few other parents, you can be sure that you can all get holiday books. Set up a holiday book swap with other parents so that you can trade winter-themed books for your kids. If the kids are old enough, you could also turn this into a party where they trade books to read and talk about with their friends. You can play around with ideas for this event however you like, but your little reader will keep reading whatever you choose over the break!

Get Everybody Outside

Outside in nature is one of the best places to learn. Spending time outside at home or at a Brookeville child care center gives kids a lot of chances to discover, observe, ask questions, and gather things. Ask your kid to take shots of any interesting animals or plants they see. Gather natural things like pine cones and other things to use in projects or on your table. Put on your warm clothes, go with the flow, and let nature teach you something exciting!

kids outside during winter break

Create Thank You Notes

Opening presents from Santa, family, and friends is the best part of every child’s Christmas morning. You can write thank-you notes ahead of time now that you know gifts will be opened! Plan for them to make their own cards to start. You can use construction paper or cardstock from a craft store. Help your kid pick out patterns and add color to the front of the cards. Customizing the cards before the big day is fine if you’d rather wait. Just leave the insides blank and finish them after the fun. Your child will be out of school for at least another week between Christmas and New Year’s!

Final Thoughts

It doesn’t matter what you do this holiday season; what matters is having fun and spending time together as a family. Not all parents have the same time off during the holidays, which means kids will still be going to their after school program in Brookeville, MD. While they might not be in traditional school, they will still have lots of time to learn and engage with others during their holiday break!

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