How far into the year do you make it before you are COMPLETELY OUT OF HOMESCHOOLING IDEAS? Well, whether it is September or February, here are our favorite ideas to make your homeschool fun this week. You will notice that the list is not complete, but we are adding to it every week, so come back and see the new ideas each week. Enjoy:
1. Play a game and put the books away!
Ok, you cannot do this every day, but seriously, how long has it been since you just kept the books on the shelf and had a good time with you children? Please understand, I am NOT saying that you should do this every day. CLICK HERE to see our favorite games.
2. Break up study with short bursts of physical activities!
Now, I know that this is not necessarily an idea for what to do, but you can do this with any subject or activity. I was sitting with my son the other day and he had been very distracting during a visit from one of our Church leaders. When the leader left, I asked him why he would not hold still. His response: “I like to move!”
What a great explanation for the colossal failure that public schools have in the lives of some children. We put them in a chair and say don’t move or talk or laugh or … well, in other words, “Don’t be a child. Don’t be what you are.” Can you see how unfair this is for children? I am not saying that they cannot learn to be still, but sometimes we create our own biggest monsters in homeschool when we expect the children to hold still that long.
So check out this post and see what my wife did for our little movers. IT WORKS EVERY TIME!
3. Physical activity stations for memorizing
Memorizing is a part of learning regardless of the subject. The technique has gotten a bad name in education circles over the last couple of decades because nobody wants to “just memorize” a fact. Actually, that is a lie. We DO WANT TO MEMORIZE. If you are not going to remember the information, then why are you studying it (or having your children study it). I believe that if we are going to ask the children to study something then it ought to be worth memorizing.
So try this to make the memorizing more fun. Create stations of physical activity (i.e. pushups, sprints, and jumping jacks). Then, have your student recite whatever you are working on. It could be the 3’s times tables. Once your child is finished, have him do 10 jumping jacks and the run to the next station where he will do the 4’s. Now he can do 10 pushups. Finally, have him run to a different station or area in the yard and repeat the 5’s. To be done he needs to sprint to a tree (or other marker) and back. Now, add a personal competitive angle and time them to see if they can get faster.
4. Kahn Academy
If you have listened to very many of our podcasts, you know how excited I am about the potential of Kahn Academy. You can get the free App by clicking on this link:
There are some seriously powerful tools for parents, including a weekly report of what your children worked on and what they need help understanding. There was a time when you would have had to pay for this kind of insight to your child’s education. Now there’s an app for that!
5. Creative Writing assignments
Creative writing is one of the easiest things to do once you learn this little strategy. Check out this example.
6. Engage in the learning process yourself
The real power in teaching comes when the teaching is accompanied by example. Show your children that learning is a life-long pursuit and that it is important to you as well. Get a great book and as you read share with them the principles that you are learning about.
Ok, maybe this is a copout for me to include this in the list of “Homeschool Ideas” but I totally believe that if you are just veggin’ out watching TV at home your children will hurry through whatever assignment you give them so that they can do what you do. Newton said, “If I have seen further, it is by standing ont he shoulders of giants.” Well, you have chosen to homeschool and that means you must be at least one or two of the giants upon whose shoulders your children will stand. So… stand up and start learning!
7. Get involved with a valuable homeschool community
Motivation may be one of the first things to leave when someone starts homeschooling for the first time. A community can give you support and help you pick yourself up after one of those really ugly schooling days. You know… the one where your child stormed out of the room and yelled, “Why can’t I just live in a van down by the river?” Yeah, one of those days. You may be able to find communities in your neighborhood. If not, then you are in the right spot. Consider yourself a member of our 101 Homeschool Ideas Community.
All you have to do is subscribe to our podcast by clicking on this link and then the “VIEW IN ITUNES” button and then clicking the “SUBSCRIBE” button.
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