Teaching Kids Without Streaming Services

I know! It’s crazy!

But here in Rural Kansas…the internet leaves a lot to be desired.

Sure, I can search the internet, or send an email (can even attach small files!) but streaming is definitely not on the table.

No Disney+,  Netflix or YouTube to keep us entertained, Zoom is even a challenge – so we have been creative about some of our education.

Now, our school has provided packets for us (teachers are AWESOME!)– so we’ve done those…but we’ve gotten creative (I’m sure you all have been too!?!) about things we WANT to learn and have fun doing them.

So here are some of our favorites for you to think about trying…

Grow something!

Learning about the life cycle of things is incredibly important, super educational and kids of all ages learn (including you!) when you take the time to talk about how things grow. Highly recommend a garden or even just herbs in a pot on your porch or maybe take seeds from a piece of fruit and plant them. 

Beans straight from the pantry with a wet paper towel in a plastic baggie…SO COOL!

*You can take this further and extend into a conversation about the periodic table for bigger kids too what chemicals make up each item!

Take a hike!

Doesn’t matter if it’s around your backyard, around your neighborhood or going to a lake (and practicing appropriate social distancing!). We have quite an advantage here in the country – wide open spaces and backyards that go on and on – mark one in the pro-category for the country here! There is so much to discover in the great outdoors! Plus it’s another good time to talk about lifecycle. Identify flowers, grasses or trees, animals and insects – so much to learn.

How they are grown, how long they live, how long…..(this list can go on and on!)

One of the many benefits of living in the country is large backyards. But never fear! There are many places to hike around Wichita!

Research something!

We have been loving this so very much. Currently, we are researching countries and it has been our favorite so far. The oldest kiddo is looking it all up and we are making a notebook, the younger kids are helping make charts and graphs about them. It has been a great learning experience for all of us.

Pick details that interest you to research those – we like land mass, population, agricultural products and more! Such a cool conversation to compare our place in the world to others.

After we finish our continents and countries we are planning trips to our favorites…maybe we will never get to go, maybe we will, but either way, planning will sure be fun! (Assuming we ever get to leave the house again.)

We also have been watching How It’s Made on the History channel…it is so cool and educational!

Life skills!

Cooking and baking are our favorites and so much math is involved with both – bonus! How about learning to sew? Addressing an envelope? Or even writing a check and balancing a checkbook. How to do laundry, iron or clean things (not ready to let them do this on their own – maybe ever – but a need to know!) Even reading a map, using an atlas, and a compass are awesome too.

We’ve also taken time to learn to fish – something the kids have wanted to do for years!

How to read a map is a good skill to have at a young age – one less thing to do when they learn to drive – plus will help with all of those travel plans you are making!

Play games!

We all have so many games – use them! Once you make your way through them, remember you can do a lot with a deck of cards – and if you run out of games with those, make up your own! We do counting and putting cards in order as super fun ways to use cards for the littles too. And when you need a break – game shows are a blast even for littlest of kids!

Never underestimate the excitement of finishing a puzzle!


Art is definitely at the top of our list. We learn about artists and mimic their work. Learn about different museums, mediums and don’t overlook the value of knowing your color wheel! So many fun activities with this.

A little Jackson Pollock education

All of these things can be done anywhere…We do have a nice advantage with outdoor activities being in the country – but we have been enjoying them all!

And if all else fails…READ!

But remember, kids are curious about almost everything. Between your interests and theirs the sky is the limit on things that you can ‘check-out’ together!

What is the sky’s limit anyway?

We should look it up.

Maybe you should too?

Happy learning everyone!

Jamie lives outside of Eureka on a cattle ranch with her favorites...husband, Diltz, and their three kiddos, Sydney (10), Henry (8) and Charlie (6). Works at Krehbiel Architecture in Wichita and spends quite a bit of time in her hometown working, playing, and volunteering. At home in Eureka, she is overly involved too...working with the community for revitalization and always enjoys encouraging people to learn how their food really gets to their plate as an advocate of agriculture through her Day at the Ranch tour, You Are Here agriculture education program and Greenwood County Cattlewomen social media outlets.