Media gets a bad rap.
I don’t think it is all bad. But, I do think that too much of anything is never good. So when you’re thinking about your children’s relationship with media, do make sure it’s not the only activity they’re participating in.
And as long as you’re doing all those real-world things, a little media can be a great supplement to your child’s education. And you don’t even have to feel guilty about it!
Here are some tips for using media.
Make It Active
Passively sitting in front of the television won’t offer many educational benefits. To use movies or episodes as a learning tool, you must engage the brain with some activity.
Here are some ideas for making that happen:
- Encourage your child to draw while watching–they can draw:
- The setting of the movie
- A main character
- Their favorite part
- What they think will happen at the end
- Talk about what you’re watching. Don’t be afraid to hit pause.
- Work on a hobby while watching; crocheting, knitting, drawing
- Do jumping jacks during one commercial break and sit ups on another
Tie it Into Your Schooling
Is your child studying pioneer life? Are they learning about ocean life?
No matter what your child is studying, there’s probably some form of entertainment you can use. Look for documentaries, child friendly films, or apps that reinforce the concepts.
Have your child read the words on the video games, look for patterns in the levels they play, and describe the characters with adjectives.
There are so many ways to tie media into learning!
Extend the Learning
Don’t just shut the television or tablet off and walk away. Spend a few minutes extending the learning, to help your child make connections. Try to find activities that activate different parts of the brain, and rely on your child’s learning strengths. You could:
- Act out a favorite scene
- Write a review
- Do a craft project inspired by the media
- Create a matching game with index cards inspired by the media
- Share three facts you learned while watching
- Draw a movie poster
How Do You Use Media to Enhance Learning?
I’d love to hear your best tips for enhancing learning with media. Do your kids have a favorite series, app, or game that reinforces what they’re learning about? Please share in the comments!
Looking for more ways to integrate media?”Check out this graphic from the Christian movie streaming service Pure Flix.