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7 Things Your Big Kid Can Learn Online For Free
PHOTO BY cbc.ca
  • Online learning is one of the greatest things that the Internet brings. For parents, this is an excellent option for days when your kids have no school because of typhoon, public holidays, or even on weekends when you just need to keep the kids busy. Letting your child explore learning opportunities online will help make this downtime productive.

    Consider online learning as an extra-curricular activity for bigger kids. These do not have to involve enrolling in costly classes because there are lots of learning materials and courses available online for free--all you need are good online search skills.

    Here are a few ideas that your big kid can learn online. 

    1 Crochet, knitting, cross stitch
    Many kids are pleasantly surprised to discover that these crafts are actually fun to do! Don’t be discouraged if your child is initially unenthusiastic--you can let your child try it out first by getting some starter sets that are usually available in craft stores. If your child already has a knack for these practical, hands-on skills, it is a good chance to get busy with a project. Let him watch some videos on YouTube or browse through craft websites, and he might churn out some wonderful creations before you know it.
    Some resources to check out:
    How To Crochet
    Cross Stitch Basics

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    2 Foreign language
    Learning another language is fun and will be very useful for your child even when he’s grown up. If your child is showing interest in a particular country, encourage him to learn how to speak, read, and write in that country's language. If your family travels a lot, you may even want to excite her further with the possibility of visiting that country to allow her to fully practice her newly learned skill. She can find tons of language resources online, from dictionaries, online courses, and even audio guides.
    Some resources to check out:
    Open Culture

    3 Coding

    If you’d like to develop and exercise your child’s analytical and logical skills, free coding programs online are worth a try. Websites such as Code.org and KhanAcademy.org offer full coding courses for kids as young as 5, and they’re for free! Learning how to code will develop skills that will help her even in her everyday life. Don’t be intimidated especially if you’ve never written any code--these courses are designed specifically for kids so they are easily digestible and fun to do!
    Some more resources to check out:


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    4 Graphic design
    If you have a child who loves spending her free time drawing or doodling, introduce her to Photoshop or Illustrator! If you don’t have these Adobe software, and you’re not ready to shell out some money for it, let her try her hands first on free software such as Paint and Gimp. Once your child is ready to move on to Photoshop, there are online graphic design courses for kids that can also serve as excellent preparation for more advanced Photoshop courses.
    Some resources to check out:
    Adobe Education Exchange
    Photoshop for Kids (of all ages)

    5 Web design

    Take your child’s design skills even further by encouraging her to learn web design. There are a lot of HTML and CSS lessons online such as Learning HTML for Kids, Basic HTML for Kids, and Web Design for Kids. You’d be surprised--your child just might start designing websites in no time at all.

    6 Gardening

    The good thing with online learning materials is you don’t have to be a gardener yourself for your child to learn. And you don’t need an expansive patch of land--you don’t even need any patch of land at all! You can use small pots for a mini vegetable garden or even create a vertical garden if space is an issue. You may even want to look into aquaponics, a way of growing plants in water and not soil. Online searches can provide your child with limitless information that she’ll need to start her own garden. There are also online gardening courses that your child can try if she learns best that way.
    Some resources to check out:
    My First Garden

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    7. Cooking and baking
    Give your child free rein of the kitchen and armed with online videos, you may just have a future Junior MasterChef candidate on your hands. Although enrolling him in a culinary class is an excellent idea, there’s no reason why you cannot let him study cooking and baking on his own if classes are unavailable or pricey. Simple, step-by-step videos are aplenty--she’ll only have to search for them!
    Some resources to check out:
    Cook Smarts
    All Recipes

    There are numerous other skills that your child (or even you!) can learn online. With the vast resources within anyone’s grasp online, the only obstacle to learning is not trying at all. You may even want to join your child by looking at some online courses, too (check out Coursera.org), so that you can explore together.

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