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Every Tuesday for the next 10 weeks, I will be praticipating in the “Ten Weeks of Top Ten Lists.” Each week a different top ten list will be posted. Today’s list is “Top 10 Must Have Items for Homeschooling.” Please visit iHomeschool Network for all of the participants’ top ten! I am sure you will be blessed by finding many new sites to enjoy. Also visit Angie of Many Little Blessings to link up your own top ten list with her Top Ten Tuesday.
Summer is here. It is my very favorite time of year. All of the burdens of the year are behind us and our schedule is much looser. At times there is no schedule at all…and that is much needed for all of us! Schedule or no schedule, the learning never stops. I try to strategize ways to continue our life lesson learning, while enjoying the freedom of summer.
Here are my top ten reasons I love summer schooling!
1. No pressure to get things done. We learn as we go, and often when there aren’t any “forced” lessons, the kids learn more effectively. For example, a day at the beach exploring as kids without an agenda can still provide so much learning. Make sure to use your child’s natural excitement and curiosity to spark conversations to inspire learning. We found a horseshoe crab shell on our recent trip to Assateague Island, so now at home we can look up information about the horseshoe crab. All because they want to. Not because they have to.
2. Kids can be kids. As I always say, learning takes place from the time we wake up until the time we go to bed. In summer the kids can be much freer to explore their own interests, and also just to be kids. Run, jump, play, explore. It is all part of the learning process.
3. Organizing and planning for me are so much easier! With no lesson to plan or formal outside activities, I use this time to really organize. I plan as much as I can for the upcoming school year and even make a meal plan for September and October. This is always our smoothest time of year as far as household “stuff.”
4. Field trips. Anyone who knows me knows that I love field trips. Local trips to the zoo, historical sites, farms, etc. There are so many opportunities for field trips!
5. Connecting with each other. I feel like now that things have finally settled down for summer I am conneting with my kids more. We have laughed more and enjoyed each other’s company more. The stress of traveling is over, and we are much more relaxed. I am going to take this opportunity to connect with each child individually more and make sure I am focused on looking them in the eye and hearing them. Not just trying to listen as I mulit-task other things. 😉
6. Gardening. I love using gardening with my kids. Unfortunately, this year we did not plant, but normally at this time we are all very excited as we begin to harvest tons of tomatoes, cucumbers, and green beans. Everyone loves picking the veggies each day and watching the garden change over the summer. Lots of lessons involved in gardening. A complete summer science course right in your backyard! (and no one really will think if it as “school.”)
7. Longer days. I love summer schooing for the mere fact that at this time of year, the sun shines longer! It truly makes our moods better and I feel definitely improves learning.
8. Adventure boxes. I haven’t done this yet, but I love the idea of a child choosing what they want to study over the summer. Then you can fill a box with books, activities, and crafts all revolving around that subject. Once a week, once a day…whatever you choose, you can have adventure box time! (maybe next year we’ll do this…)
9. Nature. Nature abounds in summer time and there is so much to learn. From the flowers blooming, to the weather patterns, to the bugs and critters out and about. Take a daily hike or just sit in your backyard and there is bound to be lots of nature study. Take a sketch book with you and just sit under a tree observing this pleasant time of year. Or when one of those summer storms strikes up, learn firsthand about lightning and hail. Sit with a camera and observe a storm out the window. You are showing your child firsthand God’s immense power.
10. S’mores and marshmallows! What better reason to love summer schooling than the fun treats it brings! I’m sure there is a lesson to be found in s’more making isn’t there?
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