If you're going to homeschooling during the summer....shake it up and make sure it's fun!
Here are a few tips to keep the learning going all summer long:
1. USE FUN SUPPLEMENT WORKBOOKS
Let's face it, asking a kid to work through a 200 page Saxon Math Book when it's 80 degrees and the outdoors are calling, is not exactly a fun situation for anyone. When my kids were young, we did continue "some" schooling through the summer months. However, I made sure the workbooks were fun, colorful, with lots of graphics, and were not too many pages. My goal as mom and teacher was to keep the overwhelming factor to a minimal. At the beginning of summer, I usually bought a variety of fun, supplement workbooks and let my kids choose which ones they wanted to work on first. This is a great way to engage children to feel like they have some "skin in the game" when it comes to their education. While this may not be ideal through the regular school months, it's a perfect time to try this approach during summer homeschooling.
Get Fun Real-Life Math Workbooks for the summer!
2. FOCUS ONLY ON SUBJECTS THEY NEED TO IMPROVE
Math & Reading
Math is a another popular subject that homeschooling parents like to focus on during the summer months. Multiplication and division seem to be one of those dreaded math skills that often times kids do not fully master throughout the school year. Multiplication and division drill workbooks are one way to keep the math going through the summer. If your child still hasn't conquered their multiplication tables, Times Tales is a fun, out-of-the-box way for children to finally get the times tables conquered.
Some parents find that summer is a perfect time to encourage their children to read books. For my kids, we had our own book reading program, where they earned 5 dollars for every book read. In addition to reading the book, they were also required to write a small one or two paragraph book report. I had one child that was a real go getter with this money incentive and read enough books to buy a bike! This again, is another way for kids to feel they have a stake and a say at what they're learning.
Since most families will be taking trips during the summer months, one great way to incorporate real-life learning is journaling. Before a trip, I would buy a blank hard cover book for each kid to journal each day. I would always have a box of colored pencils, and tape so they could add pictures or mementos to their journal books. Now that my children are grown, these journals are family keepsakes and and a cherished glimpse into their youth.
If your children get stuck on what to write, you can give them 3 questions to answer for each journal entry they make.
Example of Journal Questions:
- Where did you go today?
- What did you see?
- What is your favorite thing you saw or did today?
The question to homeschool or to completely take a break from school is different for each family. Looking back as a homeschool mom of 4, I believe the summer offered new opportunities and different learning perspective than the regular school year. And what better time than summer homeschooling to show kids that learning can be fun!