When the weather outside is frightful, learn something new

Winter is here, and cold weather may keep your children stuck inside more than they would like. The good news is that there are plenty of fun online activities, from YouTube exercise videos to online lessons in music and drawing, to help pass the time.

Learn to draw

There are many opportunities for learning to draw and paint on the internet. These fun lessons inspire a child’s creativity, help him learn to focus, and establish hand-eye coordination.

We live in an era when art programs are routinely cut from public and even private school curriculums. For whatever reason, learning art has been severely devalued by the United States’ school system. And yet, many experts agree that visual learning is just as important as reading and writing. Children take in information through the world of objects before they even learn to talk.

So, encouraging your children to learn drawing, painting, sculpting, and graphic design through internet classes is a great opportunity. They can do this on their winter breaks, or when it’s simply too cold to play outside. Online arts learning keeps them intellectually stimulated, even when they are not in school.

Exercise with online classes

One of the many fun things to use the internet for is learning new exercises. Whether your child needs to lose a little weight or gain coordination or muscle, there’s a class or online workout regime for everyone.

If your daughter thinks exercise is a drag, you can encourage her to take up ballet or hip hop dancing instead. An exercise-averse child might also be more open to learning yoga, because it’s not something children are usually exposed to in school.

Keep in mind that an online exercise regimen that seems hopelessly goofy to you might be something your children will really love. The goal, after all, is to get them moving.

One of the best things about online workouts is that they usually require no equipment – just an internet connection. And there’s no cost for most of these workouts, either.

Learning an instrument on the internet

Gone are the days when you would have to hire a tutor or private classes to teach your children how to play an instrument. Online instruction offers many opportunities to learn musical skills, even at the beginner level.

You will, of course, have to first buy the instrument. A good instrument can be pricey, so it’s a good idea to work with your child to identify the instrument he thinks is cool.

Benjamin Britten’s “Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra” is a great place to start, because it showcases all of the instruments in their sections. The woodwinds, brass, percussion, and strings all have a shot at the same tune. This means you and your child can really hear the differences between instruments.

Let’s say your child has decided he likes the saxophone. You can use a saxophone buying guide to help you pick out a beginner instrument that will make learning the fundamentals a breeze. As your child’s skills advance, he may then move to an intermediate saxophone.

Whether you buy a new or used version, check for dents. While light scratches and pings might not affect the quality of sound, dents in the mouthpiece and valve definitely will.

If you are not certain of your child’s commitment to an instrument, you can opt to rent one instead of buying. The typical rental fee of $25 a month might be easier to absorb than the cost of a brand new instrument.

In conclusion, the best thing about the internet is the opportunity to learn new things without leaving your house. You and your snowed-in child can take full advantage of this. Forget the weather, and concentrate on learning the saxophone!

Photo courtesy of Pixabay.


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