Ideas for Home

If you’re like me, you’re already wondering what to do to keep a fifth grader occupied in positive ways during this time at home. I wanted to share some resources that I’ve used and found over the past few weeks (and some that we always use) in order to give you some ideas in case you need inspiration and are at home with your kids for the time being.

Getting Outside

-In order to prevent both of us from getting cabin fever, Leo and I have been taking lots of hikes and walks outside. My son likes to do this, but if you have a reluctant walker the iNaturalist app is a fun motivator. The app allows you to record plant, insect, and animal life that you find on your travels, and it helps you identify what you’ve found. Simply download the app, snap a picture, and it will help you record and identify! You can even use this in your backyard.

-If you need fresh air, here is a list of Lancaster County nature preserves to explore:

-Citizen science is a great way to learn, explore outside, and contribute real data to real scientists! This page is an amazing resource to find citizen science projects in our area.

Home Activities that Help Brains Grow

Bake or cook together! This requires all sorts of academic skills in order to read recipes and calculate fractional amounts. Here’s a Food Network gallery with recipes kids can make:

Draw/ paint/ doodle/ create comics– my students love to spend time drawing but often don’t have much time to do so during the school day. This is a great time to doodle!


Make a Rube Goldberg Machine! You know those wacky, complicated contraptions that use chain reactions to complete an easy task? They’re a lot of fun for kids to make with simple things around the home. Here’s a video for inspiration:

Online Learning at Home

Scholastic Learn at Home:

This resource has daily learning explorations, with videos, reading, and interactive activities.

EPIC Books for Kids:

You should have received an email offering your student free online access to Epic through the end of the school year. Epic has some TERRIFIC ebooks for free. Our students really enjoy using Epic during he school day, so hopefully this will be another familiar addition to their day.

Prodigy Math

Students LOVE Prodigy Math and will beg to play during the school day. Set up like a normal video game, students must unlock each section by doing grade-level math problems.

I’ll continue to add resources here. In the meantime, do you have an activity or idea to share? Leave a comment and help us come up with some new activities!

Thinking of you call and wishing you health and happiness,

Katie Harnish

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