Pick a country and plan a theme night with your children. They will have a wonderful, hands-on, learning experience about other countries (and you will, too!).
Find out what bakeries or specialty markets are in your area and if they offer tours.
Crafts: Have fun using leftover noodles to glue on construction paper or they can make necklaces out of penne pasta. Another idea is to glue various shapes together to make trains or cars…there are a lot of fun ideas to choose from.
Make an Italian Dessert: Biscotti is made in our family a lot and this recipe is one of a kind. Invented by my grandmother’s sister, Martha, she set out to make a soft version of the biscotti at the request of her husband who didn’t like the hard, traditional cookie. Your kids will love making these because the dough is to be made into shapes (like your using Playdoh) and baked. A lot of fun for kiddos and then drizzled with a cinnamon, sugar powdered sugar icing to top it off. Tastes like a donut, made in half the time.
Click the biscotti link to get this family recipe over at my blog, Planner Perfect Meals.
Learn some of the language. Learn some of the language and speak what you learned over the dinner table. My kids love Google translator–a little too much. You know it’s fun when they’re calling each other, stupid, in Italian and all is laughing hysterically! Nice.
Play some Bocce ball. A fun Italian game that will help work off all that spaghetti and meatballs.
Go to your local library or book store and find books on the country your learning about. I love to take them to the book store, order some lattes and chocolate milks and read together. We don’t have to be as quiet as the library and we can enjoy our favorite beverages while we’re reading!
Print off drawing pages of your country you’re studying. Kids love to color and paint and what a fun way to learn Italy’s flag colors then to color it! There are a lot of different things to color and here is a link to one of our favorites.
These bullet points are obviously statements of intent for me when I’m writing them in my planner, but I wanted to be able to give you a more detailed example of how to do each goal. There is so much to learn and it can be made fun and done simply if you plan. What I’ve done is maybe do 2 countries in the week. Using 2 days to fully get all I want to do together, done. Once I have it as goals with all of its details in my specific month’s goal pages the fun part is integrating all those plans in my daily pages.
An example might be to go to the book store, color and or do our crafts on one day, and tour an Italian bakery, cook our dinner together and have fun learning some of the language on another. End it with some Bocce ball and biscotti for dessert, and you’ve had a fun, learning experience, that your planner obliged you to create!
Try Greece, Mexico, or China…can you imagine all the possibilities? If you want to try some of these themed nights in the summer, start dreaming up some ideas in those summer goal pages, now.
That is the power of planning.