Enrichment Activities for Children
By Leah Davies, M.Ed.
Schools have an opportunity to enhance children's social and emotional growth, as well as their academic knowledge. The following activities foster self-understanding, positive peer interaction, initiative, and learning.
- Have the children
list on paper their age, height, color of hair
and eyes, and any other description you would
like them to include, but not their name. Then
have them make either a "Me" or "Things I Like" collage using magazine pictures and/or a variety of art materials. Have them staple their list to the corner. Read the description as you hold up each one, and have the children guess the creator's name. Then offer the child an opportunity to discuss his or her picture. To further a sense of belonging and to stimulate dialogue, display the works of art in an "Exhibit Hall".
- Ask the children what they would like to know about themselves when they were younger. List the questions on the board. Some examples are:
- In what year was I born?
- Where was I born?
- Did I live in any other city or state?
- What was my favorite story?
- What did I like to do best?
- What was my favorite game, toy or song?
- What food did I like best?
- What did you like best about me?
Have the children think about or copy the
questions they want to ask their parent or
have them to draw and/or write a story about themselves
based on the adult responses. The
students may want to include photographs
in an "All About Me" story or book to share
with the class.
- Have the students think about a family tradition and/or family
object they would like to learn more about. Ask them to inquire about
the history of a tradition or special object. For example:
- Why do we celebrate ?
- Why is a necklace, picture, painting or other family item special?
- Have them draw a picture and/or write about what they discovered.
Then give them an opportunity to discuss
their findings with a partner or the class. If a child reports
holiday or tradition,
with his or her permission, ask the child
or a relative to share the information on their special day.
- Ask the children what they do well. For example, run, read, help
others, cook, babysit, play ball, draw, spell,
do math, skate, sing, tutor others, fix things,
do puzzles, swim, dance, act in plays.
Because children who have goals are more likely
to be self-motivated, have each child explore future
occupations with their own strength
in mind. Ask them to identify what they want to
be or do when they grow up. What is important is
not that a child fulfill his or her
specific career goal, but for the child to visualize
him or herself as successful. Have the students
draw self-portraits depicting themselves
in future roles. Some examples are:
- Athletic, a professional ball player?
- Reader, a librarian
- Cook, a chef
- Swimmer, a lifeguard
- Fix things, an engineer
- Help others learn, teacher
- Take care of people, doctor
- Singer, performer.
Provide an opportunity for children to explain
their future goal to their classmates and/or
to a group of younger children. Have them brainstorm
what they need to do to meet their goals.
Put the list on a poster as a reminder to do
Used by permission of the author, Leah Davies, and selected from the Kelly Bear website [www.kellybear.com]. 3/02
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